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FORT WORTH-Losing no time on the decision, Acme Furniture Industry Inc. has set up a market inroad with a seven-year lease for 103,662 square feet or roughly one-third of a newly delivered building in RiverPark Business Center. The City of Industry, CA-based wholesaler is planning to light the distribution space in early January.

Brad Larson, senior associate with Dallas-based Partners National, tells GlobeSt.com that the search began in mid-August and was quickly narrowed to Granite Properties’ RiverPark Building B at 15124 Grand River Rd. The deal was signed shortly before the 355,328-square-foot cross-dock delivered, putting Acme into the limelight as the spec’s first tenant.

Granite initially was up against two other building owners in the Upper Great Southwest Industrial District. “After we toured, they really zeroed in on this building,” says Larson, who teamed with Partners National CEO Kane Dossett to find Acme’s new distribution site. “It seemed to be a right fit from the location and image standpoint.” He says the cross-dock’s new construction and room to expand also weighed on the decision, which produced a lease with two bumps over the term.

Jeff Jackson, industrial leasing manager for Dallas-based Granite, confides that some free rent went on the table. “But that’s kind of the nature of the market. We felt like it was a good deal given the economic times,” he explains. The industrial space is being marketed for $3.50 per square foot, triple net, and $3 per square foot tenant improvement.

Acme has distribution centers in New York City, New Jersey, Atlanta, Miami and Arizona and showrooms in High Point, NC, Tupelo, MS, San Francisco and Las Vegas. Its primary distribution point is a 400,000-square-foot warehouse in Los Angeles.

“We’ve had a lot of activity on that building,” Jackson says. “It’s really a good distribution area.” He says RiverPark’s first building, a 145,400-square-foot front-park, rear-load design at 15600 Trinity Blvd. has just 14,138 square feet left to fill. As for the larger cross-dock, he says there are proposals out for roughly 150,000 square feet of the balance, but the tentative occupancies are later in 2009.

“But, it’s encouraging. Some still want to come into the market and some want to expand,” Jackson says. “There’s no other real estate market I’d rather be in right now in the US.”

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