Jay Dreiling, Architect, GFF
2017 Young Guns Chair
1. What is the biggest misconception about architects that you wish other commercial real estate professionals knew?
My day-to-day work as an architect isn’t limited to design as many people think. I spend most of my time managing the overall project and coordinating with internal and external partners to solve problems and meet deadlines. This includes working on strategizing with developers to bring their project vision to life, contractors on budgets, consulting with attorneys for rezoning cases, meeting with city staff for planning and code, coordinating with engineers on mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems, and many other responsibilities. Architects wear many hats, as we know a little about a lot, and we know where to go to find the answer.
2. Why is TREC a significant organization for early-career employees in the commercial real estate industry to join?
The Real Estate Council is a great organization to join early in your career because there are so many long-term benefits to being actively involved. With a large, diverse membership of over 2,000 individual members and 600 companies representing 95 percent of North Texas commercial real estate businesses, TREC sets up its members to make valuable connections with current and future leaders from across the industry. I’ve found that members share the same core values and are passionate about making a difference in the Dallas community, and it is so inspiring to work alongside them. As a TREC member, I’ve benefited not only from the professional networking and learning opportunities, but also from lifelong friendships.
3. In the last handful of years, the Millennial generation has been criticized for being largely unprepared for adult responsibilities at home, at work and in the community. What is your assessment of the Millennial contingent you represent as Young Guns chair?
The millennials I have collaborated with as Young Guns Chair are a smart, hardworking, and mature group of young professionals that are accomplishing great things in their careers. In addition to working full-time jobs in the commercial real estate industry, they are invested in TREC Foundation and community engagement project workdays, and commit countless hours of their free time serving on committees and attending events. I am thoroughly impressed by this group, and I am proud to have served as their leader this year. The Dallas commercial real estate industry is very fortunate to have such an involved group of young professionals, and they are going to accomplish great things in the future.
4. What’s the best meal in Dallas?
My personal favorite is 18th & Vine, a great place for Kansas City barbecue located on Maple Avenue directly across from Old Parkland. They have my favorite Boulevard Smokestack Series beers on tap which is rare here in Dallas. As a native Kansan, going there makes me feel like I’m back home and it also brings me back to the time my college architecture class received a behind-the-scenes tour of Boulevard’s Brewery in KC from the founder while working on a microbrewery project for the company. We got to taste the very first four test batches of the Smokestack Series beer that was maturing in whiskey barrels in the basement of the warehouse. My connection to Boulevard helps, but the Kansas City-style barbecue is mouth-watering as well!
5. One of TREC’s foundational statements is a challenge to our members to “Build the city you imagine.” What kind of city do you imagine Dallas ultimately becoming?
I imagine Dallas continuing to be flexible and adapting to the ever-changing landscape with hundreds of thousands of people moving to the area. With the influx of people, the city will have the opportunity to address improvements and expansion of its mass transit system, parks and green space, and affordable housing. Public education will also be improved as a result of this growth, which will help attract residents and companies to Dallas’ core. The resurgence of downtown will bring new development, densifying the area and surrounding districts and creating a more walkable, safe, vibrant nucleus of Dallas.