One of largest industrial buildings in Louisville planned for la - WDRB 41 Louisville News

One of largest industrial buildings in Louisville planned for land near airport

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – A Missouri real-estate developer plans to build what could be the largest industrial building in Jefferson County on land it is buying near Louisville International Airport.

NorthPoint Development of Riverside, Mo., would spend $14.8 million on 110 acres in a business park near Outer Loop, under a letter of intent with the Louisville Renaissance Zone Corp., an agency whose membership mirrors the Louisville Regional Airport Authority. The corporation approved the sale at its meeting on Wednesday.

Skip Miller, the airport authority's executive director and corporation president, said the site can accommodate a 1-million-square-foot building. He described the site as comparable in size to Amazon's distribution center at the River Ridge Commerce Center in Jeffersonville, Ind.

The land includes three parcels near Interstate 65 and the Gene Snyder Freeway. Ford and UPS are among those companies with nearby property.

Robert Gude, NorthPoint's vice president of development, did not respond to phone and email messages.

The deal, based on a price of $135,000 per acre, is the “richest sale we've had to date,” Miller told authority and corporation members. After paying to mitigate wetlands at the site and other transaction costs, the corporation stands to receive about $12.7 million, Miller said.

Board members didn't ask how the NorthPoint building would be used.

Brent Dolen, industrial property specialist for Louisville's TRIO Commercial Property Group, said a building of approximately 1 million square feet would make a “big splash” in the area. Only the Amazon warehouse and a building owned by Welsh Property Trust in Shepherdsville, in Bullitt County, are similar in size, he said.

Dolen said most industrial buildings in Jefferson County are between 250,000 to 300,000 square feet. Meanwhile, he said the vacancy rate in the county is between 4 to 5 percent and more space is needed to meet demand.

“Certainly within the county limits, county boundaries, a building of that size -- if it's not the largest industrial building in the city it would be pretty close,” Dolen said.

Miller said in an interview after the meeting that the company may plan to lease the building or build it for a client. He referred other questions to NorthPoint.

Chris Poynter, a spokesman for Mayor Greg Fischer, said he wasn't aware of the building's final use but said the square-footage involved is unique.

“That's pretty unusual for us, even with our big-box fulfillment centers,” he said.

The Renaissance Zone Corp. has sold 310 acres and would have 150 acres on the market if the NorthPoint deal is approved, according to airport officials.

Copyright 2015 WDRB News. All rights reserved.

Clarification: This story has been changed to clarify Skip Miller's comments at Wednesday's meeting. He said the site can accommodate a building of 1 million square feet. WDRB originally reported Miller saying NorthPoint plans to build a 1 million-square-foot building.


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