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SANFORD, FL-Good or bad economy, small businesses still require storage and distribution space and that’s the immediate need Small Bay Partners LLC of Maitland, FL is filling, the partners tell GlobeSt.com.

The developer plans to break ground by year end on the third 56,400-sf phase of Monroe CommerCenter South in this city. The planned three-building, 172,580-sf high-tech-wired warehouse venture is geared to users needing 2,000 sf to 50,000 sf of storage and distribution space. The average asking rent is $6.50 per sf to $7.60 per sf, which includes a 10% build out.

“Depending on site availability, there is plenty of demand in this region for 150,000 sf to 250,000 sf of CommerCenter space a year and we have the resources to develop it,” says Geoff Longstaff, a principal in Small Bay Partners and a former area banker.

Longstaff and his partners, George D. Livingston and Howard Schieferdecker, are scouting for sites in the Oviedo, FL area in neighboring Seminole County and in south Orlando. Longstaff says he is currently negotiating to buy a parcel on Goldenrod Road for a 63,000-sf commerce center. The sites are generally in the three-acre to five-acre range. Small Bay Partners can build the projects for about $35 per sf.

At Monroe CommerCenter, 25 miles north of Downtown Orlando, the first 57,340-sf phase is fully leased and construction of the second 58,840-sf phase is nearing completion.

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