Loveland annexation could host huge Amazon fulfillment center – Greeley Tribune

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LOVELAND – Part of a 152-acre parcel of land near the Northern Colorado Regional Airport, to be annexed by the city of Loveland, could house a new Amazon distribution center and several thousand jobs.

The Loveland Planning Commission is set to consider a proposal from Dallas-based Trammell Crow Co. to set the stage for a multi-million-square-foot structure built on multiple floors on 75 acres of the overall 152 parcel. acres. The remaining 77 acres would be reserved for industrial use.

The documents do not mention a specific size or a specific company, but the drawings in the commission’s information package show a multi-storey warehouse structure. Trammell Crow has built similar facilities in other marketplaces for Amazon.

A source close to the deal said the project could include three stories and 800,000 square feet of floor space, meaning the building could encompass 2.4 million square feet.

The 75 acres, closest to the airport, would be rezoned into a planned unit development, which would allow “unique deviations or standards” from Loveland’s Unified Development Code, according to commission documents. planning, allowing a building 125 feet high, compared to 50 feet; more floor space compared to the lot for a taller or taller building; and about half the number of parking spaces.

The facility would also get “an allowance for potential heavy logistics use.” Heavy logistics refers to uses “which are expected to generate at least 12 truck trips per day,” according to planning documents.

In a virtual neighborhood meeting on July 26 to discuss the project, Taylor Nelson, development manager at Trammell Crow, said the gaps include items for specialty warehouses that often don’t need what complexes Standard industrialists could for parking, opting instead for a taller building on less land.

“Our best guess is that the plots will be developed by different groups at different times, depending on market conditions,” said Nelson, for “industrial or” modified industrial “purposes.

There were four people present at the meeting, including the real estate broker of the transaction, a landscaper, a real estate broker and a person who did not give his name; none commented.

The partners

Trammell Crow is working on the project with Langan Engineering & Environmental Services Inc. of Parsippany, New Jersey. Trammell Crow and Langan have previously worked with Seattle-based Amazon.com Inc. on projects including an 850,000-square-foot, 93-acre distribution center in Richmond, Texas, started in 2020 and slated for completion this year. year.

Trammell Crow and Langan were also part of a five-story, 3.8 million square foot distribution center for Amazon on Grand Island near Buffalo, New York – a project later withdrawn after local opposition – and an almost identical project in Syracuse, which is slated to open this fall.

Langan was the Amazon engineer on a project in Massachusetts and one in the home state of Langan, New Jersey, both of which started last year, although Trammell Crow was not the developer of these agreements.

The three have also worked together on at least two projects in Colorado: an 855,000 square foot distribution center in Thornton and a 3.5 million square foot facility in Colorado Springs.

Amazon also leases 123,000 square feet in Centerra in Loveland, 19,000 square feet in Boulder, and plans to occupy 200,000 square feet in Broomfield, in a project being built by McWhinney.

A map of the surrounding area shows the site west of Interstate 25, between County Road 30 and Rockwell Avenue, which is part of a 152-acre parcel of land near the Northern Colorado Regional Airport to be annexed by the town of Loveland, which could become home to a huge new Amazon fulfillment center. (Loveland Planning Department)

Groups

Amazon recently added clusters of fulfillment and logistics facilities in U.S. markets near major metropolitan areas. Richmond is located near Houston and in Fort Bend County, where the company had previously leased or cleared land of at least 1.2 million square feet.

Six months later, the global e-commerce retailer unveiled plans for 1 million square feet in Missouri City, Texas, 15 miles away. The two new centers would provide 1,500 jobs.

Amazon said in April it was planning a five-story 650,000-square-foot facility and just under half of a 247-acre site near Richmond, Va., 90 miles from similar work. in Suffolk and Chesapeake. The three total several million square feet and are expected to combine for several thousand jobs, with facility openings slated for this year and next.

A news story in Southern California said in March that the retailer operates 19 order fulfillment, sorting and airfreight centers there and 32 “last mile” sites from which vehicles depart. for individual deliveries, totaling 13 million square feet of space in the region. Much of the real estate was added recently in Los Angeles and Orange counties as Amazon surpassed its historic base in the Inland Empire.

New U.S. centers often include Amazon’s robotic technology, which is used to pull products from warehouse shelves for shipment, news reports said. In April 2019, Amazon spent more than $ 100 million to acquire Boulder-based warehouse robotics startup Canvas Technology LLC, which developed technology to help robots navigate around people.

Colorado

Amazon centers in Colorado include the five-story, 3.5 million square foot resort in Colorado Springs which opened on July 11 and the 850,000 square foot facility at Thornton which opened in 2018.

Last August, Amazon announced it would expand a tech hub in Denver to 100 jobs and 20,000 square feet of office space. At the time, it had about 10,500 employees statewide.

Nikki Wheeler, communications manager for Amazon in Colorado, said it had 16,000 full-time and part-time workers here at the end of the year.

In late July, the media put Amazon’s national workforce at 950,000, down from the 1.3 million suggested in January reports after the holiday season.

Loveland Mayor Don Overcash, whose Ward IV includes the land, said he had not heard of specific businesses coming to the area or where they might land, but “if anyone introduced me to a primary employer in Loveland, creating jobs… it’s all about giving people the opportunity to take care of their families.

It is “maybe a very good thing,” he said. “If it’s not good for Loveland, I would have a different opinion.”

Owner groups

The 152 acres are now owned by several family trusts who “work with the development team. [on] a light industrial and logistics park, ”said Ron Kuehl, co-owner and manager of Realtec Commercial Real Estate Services Inc. in Loveland.

“The process is not over,” he said.

An owner said by phone that the land was under contract with a buyer; Kuehl said the families chatted with three potential suitors, but none were under contract and “there was no timetable” for making a deal.

Annexation and zoning come first, he said. “Then we have something that we can actually sell. “

He declined to comment further.

Landowners include the Johnson, McCreery, Reichert and LaBau family trusts. The group requested the annexation of Loveland through lawyer Sara JL Irby of Fischer, Brown, Bartlett, Larsen & Irby PC in Fort Collins.

The Johnson Trust; the McCreery and Reichert trusts; and the LaBau Trusts each own one-third of the undivided interests in the property.

Marian Johnson’s ranches in Wyoming; the McCreerys run businesses in Windsor and Loveland; the Reicherts are also local; The LaBau Family Trusts are located in Alaska, where one of the members is a longtime forestry professional who graduated from Colorado State University in 1957. The LaBaus have a named scholarship there as part of the Warner College of Natural Resources.

An entity called Thayer Family Trust is on the agenda of the Planning Commission as the owner, but the entity, formerly located in Fort Collins, was not part of the annexation request and is not listed in the technical documents.

County appraiser records do not show Thayer Trust as the current owner, although he was involved in 1994. The property has been relinquished on several occasions at a price of $ 0 purchase, indicating a gift, possibly an inheritance. The property came to the current owners in 2016, where it remains.

The Secretary of State introduced Donna McCreery, Trustee of one of the Property Trusts, as the Registered Agent of Thayer Family Partnership LLP.

The owners generally declined to comment, did not respond or referred questions to Irby, who did not respond to calls or emails.

A broker in the area said raw industrial land that requires annexation and zoning, along with utilities and infrastructure, could be worth around $ 10,000 to $ 15,000 an acre.

Next steps

The plot has made its way through city approvals, including neighborhood planning sessions and, more recently, as part of consent at the Loveland City Council meeting on August 3, which took place took place without comment.

This secured a September 7 public hearing on the project.

Monday’s planning committee meeting will review annexation and rezoning and recommend action to council for the September hearing.

Corporate, Colorado, local and media representatives for parties involved – Amazon; real estate developer Trammell Crow Co.; Langan engineers; and the landowners, their attorney, and their real estate broker – typically declined to comment or denied that an agreement was in place.

“We are proud of [our Colorado] investments, ”Amazon’s Wheeler said, but“ we don’t usually talk about potential projects ”.

She declined to say if it was one of them.

Loveland Town staff and airport and water district staff did not return phone calls.

Two local commercial real estate sources said Amazon was the potential user of the land, but this fact could not be independently confirmed by several other sources contacted by BizWest.

The documents of the town planning commission indicate: “No development is proposed for the moment. “

City council and town planning documents give the project the provisional title “Loveland Commerce Park Addition”.

Overcash said ahead of the council meeting on Tuesday that the airport grounds are “a good location for industry, manufacturing or light industry.”

“Negotiations are underway for a lot of opportunities,” he told BizWest on Wednesday, “and they usually don’t come to the board until action is required.”

© 2021 BizWest Media LLC


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