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FORT WORTH-The developer of Railhead has started construction on a 200,000-sf spec project to add the first shallow-bay space to the 663-acre industrial park, a bulk distribution development with some of the largest boxes in its submarket. The trio of buildings will deliver in March 2007.

Pat Cornell, president of Railhead Properties, has dirt work under way on a 14-acre tract in the heart of the park, the only site that he didn’t sell in December 2004 to San Antonio-based USAA Real Estate Co. Railhead Business Station’s buildings, ranging from 43,872 sf to 91,485 sf, will have spaces as small as 10,000 sf and office finish-outs from 5% to 20%, according to Cornell’s leasing broker, Todd Jones, vice president in Dallas for Houston-based Transwestern Commercial Services.

“There’s land around it,” Jones says. “If we’re successful here, we may be looking at other opportunities.” For now, the focus is preleasing what’s going to come out of the ground along Railhead Road. “We’re hoping it will be 50% leased before we complete construction,” Jones tells GlobeSt.com. The quoted rate is $5 per sf triple net and $5 per sf for tenant-improvement allowances.

Jones says neighboring developments do have small-bay spaces, but Railhead Business Station is the first of its type inside the park’s bounds. “Typically in a park this size, you don’t get down to 10,000 sf,” he says. “We feel there’s strong demand out there. The key is we can do deals in what typically has been a bulk industrial market.”

Komatsu Architecture Inc. of Fort Worth designed Railhead Business Station. The Ridgemont Co. of nearby Irving is the general contractor. With construction costs steadily rising, the going rate is nudging $40 per sf to build rear-load, front-park industrial structures with comparable features like ESFR sprinklers, dock-high doors and 24-foot clear heights.

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