Skyfarm Strategic Reaches High in the Sunshine State

Skyfarm Strategic Capital is building one of the largest recent industrial developments in South Florida.
Jeremy Shapiro

Jeremy Shapiro, Skyfarm Strategic Capital

Skyfarm Strategic Capital L.L.C., of Miami, has broken ground on Florida Commerce Park, a 100-acre industrial park in Indiantown, Fla., the developer announced Wednesday. The site is in Martin County, near Port St. Lucie and halfway between Miami and Merritt Island/Cocoa Beach/Cape Canaveral.

With the potential for up to 1.3 million square feet of industrial space, the project reportedly will be one of the largest recent industrial developments in South Florida. The site is off State Road 710 in Indiantown and is adjacent to CSX’s main rail line and also features a redundant ITS Telecom underground fiber network. Skyfarm is working with CSX on a rail spur into the park, a Skyfarm spokesperson told Commercial Property Executive.

The park reportedly offers permit-ready parcels so occupants can begin construction almost immediately and potentially complete buildings by year-end. The Panama Canal expansion project, a.k.a the Third Set of Locks Project, is scheduled for completion next April, Skyfarm notes, allowing the park to benefit from the more efficient, all-water route from Asia to the East Coast.

“Global marine container volume is estimated to triple in the next 15 years, and Florida is expected to be a sizeable recipient of that increased shipping,” said Jeremy Shapiro, director of corporate real estate development for Skyfarm.

The maximum current capacity of containerships transiting the Panama Canal is 4,400 TEUs, but the new canal locks will accommodate vessels up to 12,600 TEUs. These “New Panamax” vessels are anticipated to carry up to two-thirds of total global containership capacity by 2030, according to a Florida Department of Transportation study cited by Skyfarm. Currently, only Miami, Norfolk, Baltimore and New York have deep enough channels and large enough berths for such vessels.

Shapiro noted that rising energy prices and shifting demand are increasing the importance of sustainable logistics practices. Florida Commerce Park will have access to clean energy from the largest solar-thermal power plant in the eastern United States, operated by Florida Power & Light.

NAI/Merin Hunter Codman represents sales and leasing at the park. Data centers, distribution and energy-related companies, and manufacturing and warehouse facilities are expected to be the park’s likeliest occupants.

Not only is Miami the East Coast port that’s closest to the Atlantic side of the Panama Canal, but the city is making great efforts to accommodate New Panamax vessels, through efforts like the Miami Access Tunnel and rail connection project, Richard Thompson, managing director and global leader – Supply Chain & Logistic Solutions at JLL, told CPE. The tunnel, which opened for traffic last August, allows trucks to bypass downtown Miami, resulting in twice the traffic capacity to the port.

The emergence of rail-connected “inland ports” to expedite imports from containerships at ports to U.S. population centers is a critical part of an efficient supply chain, Thompson added.