LANCASTER, TX-Cousins Properties Inc. and Seefried Properties Inc., marking their second joint-venture spec in North Texas, will build a 776,000-sf bulk distribution center on a just-bought 47 acres in Dallas County’s southern sector. The all-in development cost is projected to be $20 million to $30 million.

Robert W. Rice, Seefried’s regional vice president in Texas, says the land’s been under contract since April. Although he can’t pinpoint the ground-breaking date, he does confirm for that Lancaster officials are reviewing final plans, which could bring a project start in the near term and delivery in second-quarter 2008 for I-35 Interchange I. “The City of Lancaster has been very good to work with,” he adds.

The JV has bought the land from the Irving Klein Trust of Lancaster, getting a development site with Interstate 35 visibility and access and about a half-mile south of Interstate 20. Rice says the site’s chief selling point is the direct freeway access–without passing any traffic signals. “It has great highway exposure. There’s direct on and off access to get in and out of our project,” he stresses, citing 1,200 feet of frontage on the service road leading to I-20 and the coveted straight shot onto I-35.

The JV’s I-35 Interchange I is a cross-dock design with 196 dock doors and 32-foot clear heights. And, Rice quickly adds, it has deep truck courts that can be secured on both sides, which is a key deal point for today’s breed of logistics providers. The pre-construction quote is $3.25 per sf, net.

Dallas-based Alliance Architects Inc. of Dallas, Pacheco-Koch and La Terra Studio Inc. are the project’s designer, civil engineer and landscape architect, respectively. Seefried will develop, manage and lease the distribution center, just as it does for the Atlanta-based JV’s other Dallas-area development, Lakeside Ranch Business Park, a 226-acre plan with a 750,000-sf structure as its lead piece of real estate and room for two more.

The I-35 Interchange I’s name is an indication that the JV has bigger plans for the southern sector too. But for now, Rice is focused on getting I-35 Interchange I out of the ground and leased. What he can say, with confidence, is “we will continue to expand our presence in the marketplace.”

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