First Industrial Realty, CalSTRS JV Takes Seattle-Tacoma Site, Plans Development

FirstCal 3, a joint venture between First Industrial Realty Trust’s Strategic Land and Development and the California State Teachers’ Retirement Pension Fund, CalSTRS, has acquired a 261-acre site near DuPont, Wash. The deal is the third major acquisition announced by the pair this year. The site is located near I-5, which serves all the major cities in the area including Seattle, Tacoma, Olympia, and Portland. The development, First Park Northwest Landing, is now in its initial stages for entitlements. The motivations for the project stem from the projected growth, both of population and port activity in the region, according to First Industrial investor relations director Art Harmon. “We think the rising population in Seattle will drive more demand for distribution and light industrial space,” he told CPN. “In addition, the Seattle-Tacoma area is increasingly being viewed as a port solution for west coast distribution. The limited supply of available land makes it an extremely attractive site.” Commercial Property News has covered two recent joint ventures announced by First Industrial Realty and CalSTRS. FirstCal Industrial Europe has an initial investment capacity of $475 million and will develop properties in The Netherlands and in Belgium. FirstCal Industrial Canada has an initial total investment capacity of $285 million and last month announced acquisitions in Toronto, Calgary and Edmonton. While the amount of money spent in this most recent joint venture has not been revealed, First Industrial has 10 percent equity and receives fees for development, property management, leasing dispositions and portfolio administration.This is the second large land acquisition for the newly opened Seattle office of First Industrial. It’s first foray into this region was last July, when it purchased a 45- acre site in Lacey, Wash., and where it is building First Park Meridian Campus, a 780,000-square-foot industrial development. “First Park Meridian Campus is in permitting stage and we anticipate breaking ground on the first building of 200,000 square feet in February,” Wayne Reisenauer, the project’s development manager for First Industrial told CPN.Moreover, the company continues to plan for new projects. First Industrial’s Harmon says that even in these more challenging times for development, “Our future plans are to continue to look for acquisition and development opportunities in the major markets in the U.S., Calgary and Edmonton, Canada, and The Netherlands and Belgium.” First Industrial Realty Trust currently owns and manages more than 100 million square feet of industrial space, in more than 30 markets in the U.S. , Canada , The Netherlands and Belgium . CalSTRS is ranked the second largest public pension fund in the U.S. ,with a $175 billion portfolio.