News Article | 5/15/2006

Hillwood Trades for Laney

In a logistical reinterpretation of musical chairs, Texas developer Hillwood will build a 400,000-square-foot distribution center for Laney & Duke Terminal Warehouse in Jacksonville, Fla., while Laney & Duke sells Hillwood a 360,998-square-foot building nearby.

“The timing of this deal is key and very opportunistic, as there is increased awareness of Jacksonville due to the recent (Mitsui O.S.K. Lines) commitment at Jaxport,” said Laney President Brian T. Duke.

Tokyo-based Mitsui last year signed a 30-year lease to bring the first cargo container service to Asia to the Port of Jacksonville. The company will be the port’s largest tenant in size, revenue and containers handled when its first East Coast terminal, a $200 million, 158-acre facility, opens in late 2007 or early 2008.

The build-to-suit development, to be located at Norfolk Southern Railroad’s Westlake Industrial Park, features access to Jacksonville’s I-295 loop, the north-south I-95 corridor and the east-west I-10 route into the southern United States.

“The Jacksonville market is one of the top distribution nodes in the country,” said Gary Frederick, vice president of Hillwood Investment Properties.

The facility will be part of about 9.6 million square feet of commercial property under construction at Hillwood projects around the country, including AllianceTexas, near Fort Worth; AllianceCalifornia, in San Bernardino; Victory, in Dallas; and DeSoto Trade Center, in Southhaven, Miss.

Hillwood will lease the former Laney & Duke property to its warehouse customers.