(Read more on the industrial market.)

MINOOKA, IL-Opus North Corp., based in Rosemont, has started construction on a 965,183-sf speculative distribution building at the Minooka Ridge Business Park after selling the 861,438-sf Minooka Ridge Building One. The construction cost for the Minooka Ridge Two distribution center was not disclosed.

Opus North recently closed on the sale of Minooka Ridge Building One, an 861,438-sf distribution center on 48.5 acres, to Macy’s as previously reported by GlobeSt.com. The building is expected to open next spring. The sale price was not disclosed but Macy’s will invest $50 million for the center, which includes the acquisition costs of the building and land in addition to the cost of equipment for the new facility.

The second speculative building will be constructed on a 52.4-acre parcel. The building will have 32-foot clear ceiling height, an Early Suppression Fast Response (ESFR) sprinkler system, 162 truck docks and 293 trailer spaces with the possibility for expansion for both the docks and trailer space. Construction is scheduled to be complete in June 2008. The building will likely have two tenants in the 500,000-sf range, says Greg Terwilliger, real estate director for Opus North Corp. The building was designed by Opus Architects & Engineers and is being constructed by Opus North Corp. The building will be marketed by David Kahnweiler and James Estus, both with Colliers Bennett & Kahnweiler Inc. The asking lease rate is $2.95 per sf, net.

The business park is along I-80 and near I-55 and the BNSF intermodal facility in Elwood, IL, Terwilliger says. Opus North owns 221 acres and currently plans to construct a total of about 3.7 million sf. Current plans are for four buildings between 800,000 sf and one million sf apiece on the site, although is possible they may do some smaller build-to-suit buildings instead, Terwilliger says.

Opus South Corp., based in Atlanta, is also starting construction on Couchville Pike Business Center, a 164-acre industrial park at the intersection of Couchville Pike Road and Tennessee State Route 840. The first building will have approximately 700,000 sf and is scheduled to be completed in the fall of 2008. When the business park is completely developed, the park will have four buildings with a total of more than 2.2 million sf of warehouse and distribution space. An estimate for the first building and the business park were not disclosed. Don Kent and Clinton Gilbreath, both with CB Richard Ellis, are the brokers for the project.

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