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LAKE FOREST, CA-A Lake Forest flex-tech building has been leased in a $5.4 million deal, as a new report shows that the county’s decline in manufacturing may be headed for a turnaround.

The facility, which encompasses 42,090 sf, will be occupied by a New York-based bar code technology company. Slated to occupy the space in November 2001, the new tenant will be relocating from Costa Mesa to the Lake Forest facility. The building is located at 25541 Commercecentre Dr. in the Palm Terrace project.

The tenant, Symbol Technologies Inc., was represented by Scott Granger of Julien J. Studley Inc. The landlord, Laguna Niguel-based Birtcher Real Estate Group, was represented by Doug Mathews and Gary Allen of Grubb & Ellis’ Newport Beach office.

The latest deal has occurred just as a new report about manufacturing activity in the county has been released. The report, published by Chapman University, shows that although the county’s manufacturing sector has contracted for the second consecutive quarter, the decline is not as severe as it was in the first quarter.

Chapman’s composite index increased to 45.8 in the second quarter from 43.7 in the first quarter. If the index stands at below 50, it means that the manufacturing sector is contracting. The index measures the manufacturing sector in terms of production, new orders, employment, inventories of purchased materials and supplier deliveries.

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