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A downtown Dallas 7-Eleven that averaged one police call a day has closed

A 7-Eleven in downtown Dallas that became a hangout for the homeless and a constant nuisance for police has closed.

The sidewalk in front of the convenience store at 2008 Commerce Street was constantly littered with trash and impassable many times of the day as homeless people congregated outside the store. Potential customers avoided the location even though it was the only convenience store in an area with enough pedestrian traffic to support such a business.

Located on the southeast corner of Commerce and Harwood Streets, it’s surrounded by apartments and hotels, the University of North Texas satellite campus on Main Street and UNT College of Law and the Dallas Municipal Court.

In the last three months, the 7-Eleven had 98 calls to 911 – an average of one per day, according to the Dallas Police Department.

Those calls resulted in officers writing 11 reports, mostly related to incidents involving people with warrants who were then arrested, said Juan Fernandez, DPD public information officer. Calls often followed disturbances between homeless people that dissipated once the police arrived.

“But all those calls cost the city money,” Fernandez said.

7-Eleven and its landlord haven’t replied to The Dallas Morning News’ requests for comment.

The 7-Eleven at 2008 Commerce Street in downtown Dallas closed Monday. A construction crane in view behind the building is working on a new apartment tower. (Irwin Thompson / Staff Photographer)

Since 2017, the building housing 7-11 has been owned by Dallas-based Nayeb Group, a family-run real estate company with strip shopping centers and other commercial real estate throughout Dallas.

Other storefronts in the 9,000-square-foot building are also boarded up. The building was identified for decades by the Doug’s Gym sign. That business closed in 2018 when the owner retired after operating the gym for 55 years.

The building dates back to 1925 and has an appraised market value of $1.4 million, according to county records.

7-Eleven started opening stores in downtown Dallas in 2007 with the first one on the ground floor of its former headquarters in One Arts Plaza. Its stores were part of a renewed investment in downtown Dallas that included new residential and restaurant openings.

The chain now has eight stores in the central business district and several others in Uptown, Deep Ellum and the Cedars.

The 7-Eleven on Commerce has been open since at least 2011, according to county records. The store became an anomaly in a part of downtown that in recent years attracted new investment and considerable redevelopment.

Developers have defined and named the 20-acre area bordering Deep Ellum as the East Quarter.

The far east side of downtown Dallas has attracted new high-rise residential and office construction and investment in amenities such as the new Harwood Park that’s under construction. Dallas developer Todd Interests bought a dozen old, vacant commercial buildings and has been turning them into new offices, apartments and restaurants.

The sidewalk in front of the 7-Eleven at 2008 Commerce Street was often impassable as it...
The sidewalk in front of the 7-Eleven at 2008 Commerce Street was often impassable as it became a hangout for homeless people. (Irwin Thompson / Staff Photographer)

Twitter: @MariaHalkias

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