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RANCHO DOMINGUEZ, CA-First Industrial Realty Trust Inc. has signed logistics firm DHL/Exel Inc. to a $12.9 million lease at a building that the REIT bought a year ago to convert into logistics use, according to the Klabin Co., which has been involved with the building from the start. David Prior, president in the Klabin Co.’s Torrance, CA office, explains that the Chicago-based industrial REIT acquired a vacant 356,000-sf building on 14.5 acres of land at 3015 Ana St. in Rancho Dominguez about a year ago for conversion to modern logistics use.

First Industrial then demolished 150,000 sf of the existing building and created a 213,544-sf facility that features 55 dock-high loading positions, 20-foot minimum interior clearance and 5.7 acres of additional land for container storage, plus two Union Pacific rail spurs. Immediately after the building was converted, DHL/Exel signed a five-year lease for the entire building. Both First Industrial and DHL/Exel were represented by David Bales, Frank Schulz and Todd Taugner of the Klabin firm.

DHL/Exel designs and implements innovative contract logistics solutions for companies in a wide range of industries, according to its web site. The new First Industrial tenant will employ approximately 100 workers at the site.

Taugner points out that the Klabin Co. sold the building to First Industrial a year ago and suggested a redevelopment of the property focusing on a port-related logistics center “with a tremendous amount of dock high loading, and a yard to store and stage trailers for transloading.” The conversion was based on “the mounting need for logistics facilities in the South Bay,” Taugner says.

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