The Des Moines suburb grew by 6.4 percent to 62,416 residents during the 12-month period ending July 1. It’s the third year in a row Ankeny has been on the U.S. Census Bureau’s list of the fastest-growing cities with population of 50,000 or more.
Hubbell Realty Co. plans to construct a series of speculative industrial buildings over the next several years on 65 acres of land in Ankeny’s Crosswinds Business Park.
The West Des Moines real estate development company broke ground a few weeks ago on the first building, a 137,500-square-foot structure that it will lease to one large tenant or multiple smaller tenants when complete. A speculative building isn’t built for a specific tenant or company; it’s constructed to anticipate future demand.
To that end, Chris Trosper, Hubbell’s vice president of commercial development and investor relations/equities, said Hubbell believes the location is well positioned for industrial users wanting easy access to Iowa’s interstate system.
“What I think we will see is people who want to be really accessible,” Trosper said. “Close to I-35. Close to I-80.”
Hubbell plans to invest approximately $10 million into the first building, which will be finished in 2020. Hubbell will construct future buildings as need dictates, Trosper said.
“It’s going to be a see-how-it-goes type of process,” he said.
Trosper said a current site plan for the Hubbell property shows the grounds eventually housing up to eight buildings. Hubbell envisions most to be in the 100,000 to 120,000 square foot range, he said. He expects the company will target tenants seeking space of 20,000 square feet and larger.
The city of Ankeny last month approved a development agreement with Hubbell that will provide five years of 50% tax increment financing rebates for the initial building in the project. At maximum, the incentive package will be worth $225,000.
Crosswinds Business Park will be home to several development projects announced over the past year, including Northern Tool’s $75 million distribution center; Kreg Tool’s $34 million office, manufacturing and warehouse facility; and Ruan Transportation Management Systems’ $9 million operations and training center.
Economic development director Derek Lord said the Hubbell project is the first to officially break ground in the industrial park, which was established in 2008.
“It’s helpful to have available product on the market,” he said of Hubbell’s plans. “A lot of times, corporate decision makers make a decision and they want to move very, very quickly. To have existing product available for lease really enhances any community’s competitive advantage.”
Lord said he expects Ruan to break ground in the fall, with Kreg Tool and Northern Tool expecting to break ground in the spring. The park still has about 200 acres of land available for development, he said.
Hubbell’s other industrial development work includes a 72,000-square-foot building under construction in Johnston’s Birchwood Crossing business park and Hubbell’s five-building Grimes Distribution Center project. The final Grimes building is expected to be complete this fall.
Ian Richardson covers Ankeny and Altoona for the Register. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org, at 515-284-8254, or on Twitter at @DMRIanR.
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