News Article | 4/14/2006

Hillwood starts work on center

The redevelopment of the former Norton Air Force Base in San Bernardino took another step forward this month as developer Hillwood began construction of a 913,726-square-foot distribution center.

The building, scheduled for completion this fall, will house a distribution center for Pactiv Corp. , an Illinois-based manufacturer of containers ranging from Hefty trash bags and disposable plates to meat packaging and egg cartons.

Michael Daley, senior vice president in the Ontario office of real estate firm Colliers Seeley International Inc., said Pactiv will move into a 586,820-square-foot space of the new building.

Daley said the firm is talking with potential users for the remaining space in the new building as well as a 540,000-square-foot extension of a Pep Boys distribution center built in 2005.

Daley said Pep Boys has an option on 200,000 square feet of the extension, which it has not exercised yet. The remaining space is available.

Since taking over redevelopment of the base under the name AllianceCalifornia, Texas-based Hillwood, a company chaired by billionaire Ross Perot Jr., has overseen construction of 5.8million square feet of new buildings, almost exclusively warehouses.

Besides Pep Boys and the upcoming Pactiv warehouses, the project includes distribution centers for the Kohl’s department store chain, toymaker Mattel and the new Stater Bros. corporate headquarters, which is under construction.

Most recently, Medline Industries Inc., an Illinois-based medical supply company, announced plans to open a 404,560-square-foot warehouse at the base.

The redevelopment has helped create nearly 3,000 new jobs in and around the base, according to Hillwood.