The Dallas Morning News | Highland Capital moving to Uptown from Far North Dallas

A Dallas-based international investment firm is moving its offices from Far North Dallas to Uptown.

Highland Capital Management LP’s move from the Galleria to the Crescent complex is the latest in a series of high-profile office relocations from north of LBJ Freeway back to the city’s center.

The 21-year-old investment adviser has rented about 45,000 square feet in the Crescent office towers on Pearl Street at Cedar Springs Road.

“We anticipate moving in the last few months of 2011,” Scott Wilson, Highland Capital Management’s managing director of strategy, said Tuesday. “We are excited that Highland and its growth will become part of the dynamic developments in the Uptown area.”

Wilson said the company was drawn to the large number of financial firms that are already in Uptown and downtown.

“It’s more convenient for our investors to be in the heart of the investment management district,” he said.

About 150 people will work in Highland Capital’s Crescent office.

Highland Capital has been in the Galleria on Noel Road, just north of LBJ Freeway, for more than a decade.

The company manages more than $22 billion in assets for clients including pension plans, foundations, financial institutions, governments and wealthy individuals.

Along with the Dallas headquarters, Highland has offices in New York, London and Singapore.

Some of Highland Capital’s affiliated operations at the Galleria — including NexBank — will not make the move to the Crescent.

“We have portfolio companies that have space here that are not moving,” Wilson said.

However, real estate brokers say NexBank representatives have looked at space in other Uptown office buildings, including Chateau Plaza and 17Seventeen McKinney.

With Highland’s new rental deal, the Crescent is more than 90 percent leased. Other major tenants in the building include Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, SmithBarney, Citibank, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Merrill Lynch and JPMorgan.

“There are over 700,000 square feet of financial firms in our 1.2 million square feet of buildings,” said John Zogg, managing director of leasing with Crescent Real Estate.

Real estate service firm Transwestern negotiated the Highland Capital lease with Crescent Real Estate Equities.

Highland Capital is the latest of several firms that have shifted operations from northern Dallas back to the city’s center.

Real estate service companies Cushman & Wakefield and CB Richard Ellis recently moved from along the Dallas North Tollway to Uptown.

And Tenet Healthcare Corp. moved its headquarters from the Galleria complex to the Fountain Place tower in downtown Dallas in 2009.

“Highland Capital is another big company moving back to a close-in location,” said John Crawford, who heads the economic development group Downtown Dallas Inc. “We are seeing more and more interest in downtown and Uptown from companies located outside the area.”

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