On Friday, May 19th, ground was officially broken on the City of Lebanon 50,000 square-foot shell building. [Watch the Video]
“There’s a lot of people who were involved with this development, understanding the vision of what we are trying to do here,” said City of Lebanon Planning & Zoning Director Ben Bontrager. “I’d like to thank Mayor Gentry for understanding the vision and really pushing this forward. The City Council was obviously heavily involved in the financing side of this as well, as well as the Lebanon Redevelopment Commission. Again, thank you to all of our partners that helped understand the vision of this project, and helping get the financing in place to move this project forward.”
“I really feel that the city will be in a position where they can pretty much hand-pick who they would like to be here, and be patient with that,” said Greg Martz from GM Development. It’s exciting to be a part of a process and project like this.”
“For years now we have had a massive gap in our inventory in this square footage size, in this 50,000 square-foot range,” said Boone County Economic Development Executive Director Molly Whitehead. “So what that means is that these are growing companies, manufacturers, research and development with typically higher paying wages. We have had to decline those projects over the years because we simply do not have the product. Having a space that is like this in Boone County, it shaves months off of the planning time for companies and makes it a much more desirable location for companies to locate.”
“When you look at the market, and actually we did this several months ago,” added Bontrager. “We looked at the Indianapolis market and found two buildings that meet the criteria for this type of building in the entire Indianapolis market. So there is a huge void to address these types of needs. Companies are looking for existing buildings, they are looking for this size building, and there is just nothing that accommodates that. So this is very important to us, as we look to grow our market in the City of Lebanon, being able to provide the types of products that the companies are looking for.”
“This is something definitely new for our community,” added Whitehead. “Definitely new for Boone County. There have been spec buildings in other parts of Boone County, we have even had one here in Lebanon, but they are typically much larger. So having this smaller sized space really is unique and helps set us apart in the market.”
Given the likely success of this endeavor, Bontrager stated that it is one that could be replicated on additional area acreage.