Friday, August 12, 2022

Wilmington Trade Center breaks ground on second building, doubles capacity

Edgewater Ventures and McKinley Building Corp have begun construction on the second building in the Wilmington Trade Center, a debut spec industrial complex located off Highway 421. (Courtesy photo)

WILMINGTON — The two-year-old commercial real-estate firm Edgewater Ventures has broken ground on another property in Wilmington. It will be the second building constructed as part of its debut spec industrial complex located off Highway 421.

The Wilmington Trade Center saw the recent completion of its 157,610-square-foot first building. Following suit will be the identical second structure, also 157,610 square feet, adding to the 425,000-square-foot campus.

ALSO: Edgewater acquires distribution facility near ILM

CEO Chris Norvell confirmed the center signed recent leases with PaperFoam and Coastal Carrier, to be located in the complex.

“We’re excited to start our second building at Wilmington Trade Center and capitalize on the momentum in the park,” Norvell said in a release.

Edgewater chose to build along Highway 421 — minutes from downtown Wilmington, the airport and the ports — due to its close proximity to I-140 and I-40 to Raleigh, Highway 17 to Myrtle Beach, as well as I-74 to Charlotte.  

The second building will be constructed with tilt-up concrete and “extensive glass lines,” clear 32 feet in height. The buildings also will contain an ESFR sprinkler system and 180-foot deep truck court, according to a release. 

Edgewater currently owns and operates a portfolio of 3.7 million square feet of properties throughout the Carolinas, including a 210,000-square-foot facility it purchased near the Wilmington International Airport last month. The Raleigh-based firm signed a long-term ground lease with ILM for 30 years last November.

Its latest Wilmington Trade Center property is a collaboration with Wilmington-based McKinley Building Corp. The local builder has overseen a million square feet of construction on industrial facilities in the area. Eight of its buildings are positioned at the I-140 Business Park, just south of Edgewater’s trade center. 

Ken Dull, president of McKinley Building Corporation, said upon the project’s completion, it “will continue to raise the bar for all southeastern North Carolina for supporting logistics and port business.” 

The second building is expected to be operational by 2023.

Regional economic driver the Wilmington Business Development reported the local market continues to see industrial momentum specifically along 421.

“We clearly recognize the significance of this financial investment and the recruitment tool that it will be for the Greater Wilmington region,” WBD CEO Scott Satterfield said. “Our currency is jobs, tax base and investment, and this development provides us with a high demand product.”

The speculative Class-A industrial development is the first built in New Hanover County. Wilmington Trade Center will grow Edgewater’s portfolio by around 1.5 million square feet.


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Shea Carver
Shea Carver is the editor in chief at Port City Daily. A UNCW alumna, Shea worked in the print media business in Wilmington for 22 years before joining the PCD team in October 2020. She specializes in arts coverage — music, film, literature, theatre — the dining scene, and can often be tapped on where to go, what to do and who to see in Wilmington. When she isn’t hanging with her pup, Shadow Wolf, tending the garden or spinning vinyl, she’s attending concerts and live theater.

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