Dallas-based CTR Logistics, which recently finished this approximately 800,000-square-foot building at the northwest corner of CR 700W and CR 300N in Hancock County, has plans for two more similar buildings in the vicinity total- Mitchell Kirk | Daily Reporter
Dallas-based CTR Logistics, which recently finished this approximately 800,000-square-foot building at the northwest corner of CR 700W and CR 300N in Hancock County, has plans for two more similar buildings in the vicinity total- Mitchell Kirk | Daily Reporter
HANCOCK COUNTY – A developer that recently finished over 1 million square feet of warehouse space is looking to build nearly 1 million more nearby.

While the proposed new sites have the zoning designation they need, the fact that they’re right across a county road from a residential neighborhood is weighing on officials as they prepare to consider tax breaks for the projects.

Dallas-based CTR Logistics recently finished developing a building about 800,000 square feet and another about 250,000 square feet west of CR 700W between CR 350N and CR 300N.

Richard Archer of CBRE, a commercial real estate firm working with CTR Logistics, told Hancock County Council members earlier this month that the developer is working on leasing those buildings.

“My understanding is that there’s deals close in the works here,” Archer said, adding that’s motivating the developer to pursue a second phase.

Like the first two, they’re being planned without tenants yet secured but with the hopes of doing so by or shortly after completion. Both sites are right across CR 300N from the Hunters Chase neighborhood.

Kent Fisk, a Hancock County Council member, asked if any internal roads would be needed at the sites. Lately, the county has been arranging forgivable loans to industrial developers for road improvements, through which developers take on the improvements but then get paid back via taxes generated by their projects that demanded the improvements in the first place.

Archer said CTR Logistics is currently only seeking a standard tax abatement from the county for the two latest proposed projects, which would gradually phase in taxes on the real property improvements over the course of 10 years. But he also acknowledged the county’s recent practice of entering into economic development agreements over large industrial projects and how that could ultimately change what’s expected of CTR and the county. Past agreements have included forgivable loans for infrastructure improvements and have strayed from the county’s standard tax abatement schedule while also outlining payments from developers to the county to be used for public safety and schools.

“We’re just asking for a normal tax abatement so that we can compete with every other project that’s being built,” Archer said. “We’re not asking for anything above just a normal tax abatement, but I do realize that you’ve added a step to this process with the (economic) development agreement, and so I don’t want to sit here and say that couldn’t come into play.”

Archer also said the estimated total investment for CTR Logistics’ latest proposal is about $75 million. He added that projected taxes paid on the new buildings over the life of an abatement would be about $11 million and about $1.5 million a year after that.

County council members Robin Lowder and Keely Butrum encouraged CBRE and CTR Logistics to keep the residents of Hunters Chase in mind as the process moves forward, which will include presenting to the Hancock County Commissioners and returning before the council for votes on any abatements.

“I would start thinking as a group about what concessions you would consider,” Butrum said. “… This is a very large swath of what looks like potentially hundreds of homes even that might likely feel impacted with those semi entrances right in front.”

Mary Noe, a county council member, asked Archer and his colleague for insight into how the market is responding to the kind of lease space CTR Logistics is proposing.

Nick Busch, also with CBRE, said it isn’t slowing.

“We’re still seeing about the same activity as far as how many square feet are being occupied new this year as last year,” he said. “So while there has been nationally a bit of a downtick, we’re not seeing that locally.”

Jim Shelby, who represents the county council on the Hancock Economic Development Council, said the HEDC is not seeing a decrease in interest for such space either.
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