News Article | 4/16/1999

Four Seasons Chooses Site In Lewisville Business Park

Four Seasons chooses site in Lewisville business park Tax exemptions are a factor in move from Coppell Amanda Bishop, Staff Writer

LEWISVILLE — Manufacturer Four Seasons has selected Waters Ridge Business Park in Lewisville for its manufacturing and distribution operation. Panattoni Hillwood Development Co. will build a 415,000-square-foot distribution center on 22 acres for the maker of air conditioning and heater replacement parts, said Susan Richman, director of finance and operations for Four Seasons. Four Seasons will then lease the building for at least 10 years. Tom McCarthy and Sharon Morrison of The Staubach Co. represented Four Seasons in the negotiations. Principal Tal Hicks represented Panattoni Hillwood. The contract was signed April 6, after two months of negotiations, and construction will begin in the next few days, Richman said. The building should be completed by November. Four Seasons, which employs 400 to 500, is the climate-control division of New York-based Standard Motor Products Inc. (NYSE: SMP), which had net income of $22.3 million on revenue of $649.4 million in 1998. Four Seasons is marketing a 170,000-square-foot building that it currently owns and occupies on South Royal Lane in Coppell. If Four Seasons is unable to sell the building, Panattoni Hillwood will purchase it as part of the contract negotiations, Richman said. Hicks said the agreement to purchase the building was “unusual.” “It gives Four Seasons a lot of flexibility,” he said. “It’s one of the reasons we were able to consummate our agreement.” Four Seasons selected Lewisville because it offers triple Freeport exemptions. Those exemptions free companies from paying county, city and school district taxes on goods that leave the state within 175 days. “It was a substantial issue for us,” Richman said. Four Seasons left Coppell in part due to the city’s lack of triple Freeport exemptions. The school district has declined twice in recent years to adopt the Freeport measure, costing the company an additional $600,000 in annual taxes to the district, according to Gary Sieb, Coppell’s director of planning. Four Season’s departure will mean a loss of $40,000 in tax revenue to the city annually. The company selected Waters Ridge over other Lewisville sites because of the park’s proximity to its current warehouse in Coppell and its ownership by Panattoni Hillwood. “It’s exactly five miles from where we are now so there are minimal employee disruptions,” Richman said. “We are very impressed with the Panattoni Hillwood group. We felt they could deliver the project on time.” D.P.R. Construction Co. is the general contractor and Gromatzky Dupree & Associates is the architect.