NorthPoint Development has struck a deal with an unnamed tenant at its new logistics hub, built on a former Harley-Davidson manufacturing site.
Construction began in March on the 750,000 square-foot building, which should be finished by the year’s end, said Larry Lapinski, vice president of the Kansas City-based development group.
A tenant, who wishes to remain unknown for the moment, will occupy 80 percent, or 600,000 square feet, of the building, Lapinski said. The rest of the space is available for lease.
Those who worked for Harley-Davidson might know the location of the warehouse — 1445 Eden Road, Springettsbury Township — as a former Harley-Davidson manufacturing site, according to Redevelopment Authority of the County of York Chairman Tom Englerth, one of several officials who spoke to a crowd at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the building.
The site was also once a munitions factory, and a legacy of environmental issues there had posed challenges for redevelopment, Englerth said.
“Really it took from 1981 until now to get the site put back into use,” Englerth said.
The groundwater had been contaminated with industrial solvents, and it took the installation of a “vapor barrier” to ensure everyone’s safety, said John Repetz, a Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection spokesman.
“That cooperation allowed the project to move forward and reach the point it is at today,” Repetz said.
The fact that the property remained off the tax rolls for so long was a factor in getting a Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance for the site. The tax assistance program allows taxing authorities to exempt improvements to a business property from local real estate taxes for a period of time.
Taxes will be paid on the property, assessed at $3.7 million, beginning next year, said Blanda Nace, York County Economic Alliance vice president. The project also will bring $173 million in economic impact to the region in the construction and first year of operation, Nace said.
So far, much of that has gone to contractors Stewart & Tate Construction, an engineer from NuTech and an environmental engineer from ARM Group, all hired for the project.
The warehouse, with more than 60 docks for shipping and receiving, will also likely add commercial truck traffic to Route 30, though the developer’s traffic impact study hasn’t yet been filed.
Lapinski declined to speculate on the jobs or economic impact the tenant will bring to the area, wishing to leave that information up to the tenant.
NorthPoint’s 45-acre Northland Park industrial site includes warehouses for Musician’s Friend, FedEx and Grainger Industrial Supply, according to a July report by the Kansas City Star. The five-year old development group has other sites in Missouri, Kansas, Tennessee, Ohio and Pennsylvania, totaling about 20 million square-feet of space, Lapinski said.
Though it might seem odd to build a warehouse without a specific tenant locked in, demand has been high for warehouses like this throughout south central Pennsylvania, Lapinski said.
He said his company chose York because of “great transportation, a really strong labor market, and the whole community was supportive of the project. So those are three key ingredients.”