South Dallas warehouse boom reaches Wilmer

New development group to break ground in April
Dallas Business Journal - December 15, 2006
by Christine Perez Staff Writer

A new development group called Industrial Works Investment Funds is joining the party of developers making a bet on southern Dallas County.

The group has purchased 30 acres in Sunridge Business Park off Interstate 45 in Wilmer and plans to break ground in April on a speculative 520,000- square-foot warehousing and shipping facility.

Stephen Sanders, formerly with real estate broker Fischer & Co., is a partner in the new development group. Sunridge Business Park is a 327-acre project owned by Prime Rail Interests LLC, a group led by industrial developer Mike Rader.

The project, called I-45 Transport I, should be ready for occupancy by the fourth quarter of 2007. It's being marketed by Craig Hughes, Dan Cook and Gary Collett with Cushman & Wakefield of Texas Inc. Hughes said the prime target is a large, logistical user.

"We're looking for one big tenant, two at the most," he said. "It will have more than 175 trailer storage positions built in and a truck driver staging area -- two features that a lot of the larger users are looking for."

Duke Realty Corp., ProLogis and First Industrial Realty Trust also have new projects in the area. The big draw: Union Pacific's $100 million Dallas Intermodal Terminal, which opened last year.

"Burlington Northern Santa Fe has intimated that it's going to build its largest intermodal hub in their national system just to the west of the UP facility," Hughes said. "The city of Dallas is pushing hard for designation as an inland port, and the area's being considered as a potential Foreign Trade Zone. There's just a whole confluence of events coming together to make this a hot, hot market."

Don Hudson, mayor of Wilmer, said the project will broaden the city's tax base by $60 million, which will enable it to enhance residential services, including infrastructure improvements and emergency services.

"That building is our first major success story," he said. "The benefits from what they're doing are astronomical."

I-45 Transport I was designed by Dallas-based Gromatzky Dupree and Associates. Cadence McShane Corp. is the general contractor. Pacheco Koch Consulting Engineers is providing engineering services for the project. | 214-706-7120