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PALMDALE, CA-Martin Properties Inc. of Westlake Village is scheduled to start construction today on the firm’s new 100,000-sf Challenger Business Park, a $35-million development that will feature class A office and medical space. The project, one of the city’s first class A medical and office facilities, will rise on a site that is adjacent to the Palmdale Regional Medical Center, which is now under construction.

Challenger Business Park will offer office space ranging from 1,200 sf to 49,000 sf, with buildings for sale from 6,250 sf to 8,400 sf. The project also includes two buildings dedicated for retail use.

The business park will be developed on a site at Palmdale Boulevard and Fifth Street West, in a state enterprise zone just off Highway 14. The development site is surrounded by restaurants, hotels and retail stores.

The project will fill a growing need for space required by doctors and other medical professionals, who, until now, have not had a central location from which to service the community, says Mike Tingus, president of Lee & Associates-LA North/Ventura Inc.

The Challenger Business Park space is listed with the Lee & Associates’ Antelope Valley marketing team of Errol Van Horne and Susan Champion and principals Scott Romick and John Battle. Members of Lee’s San Fernando Valley offices also are representing the project.

The Lee representatives note that Palmdale is among the fastest growing cities in the nation, and the new medical office project is designed to meet the city’s rising demand. For example, according to the Greater Antelope Valley Economic Alliance, Palmdale’s current population of 141,012 is expected to grow to 153,197 by 2011.

Martin Properties president Robert Martin says that the new business park will bring a “much-needed” space to Palmdale. The new development will expand a Martin Properties portfolio of investment properties that includes office buildings, medical and surgical centers, retail shopping centers, self-storage facilities and land parcels.

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