Tampa Bay Times
Port Tampa Bay Approves $50 Million Logistics & Distribution Center
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Maryland-based Tradepoint Atlantic, a shipping logistics company, is coming to Tampa, Fla., in a deal that Port Tampa Bay CEO Paul Anderson called “potentially one of the biggest modern opportunities in the modern history of our port.”
Tradepoint Tampa, an offshoot of Port of Baltimore logistics and industrial center Tradepoint Atlantic, will lease 35 acres to build a $50 million, 500,000-square-foot distribution facility designed to move cargo between ships, trucks and rail cars.
The 40-year lease, approved Feb. 21 by port commissioners, could draw companies looking to push additional cargo through Tampa.
“If you just look at their footprint of what they did in Baltimore, of 3,300 acres, that’s two-thirds the size of the entire complex of this port, which is by far the largest in the state of Florida,” Anderson said. “Their track record is incredible.”
Tradepoint Atlantic is owned by billionaire Jim Davis’s private equity group Redwood Holdings, whose portfolio includes Tampa’s Pepin Distributing and Morgan Automotive Group. That familiarity with the market was a factor in Tradepoint looking to do business there, said CEO Kerry Doyle.
“Looking at Tampa geographically and economically, and the demographic fundamentals, all those look favorable, and are quite strong,” Doyle said. “It’s a very active port community, and it’s very similar to what we’ve established at Tradepoint.”
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Tradepoint Tampa will sit next to the container terminal and cold storage facility at Hooker’s Point. Companies will be able to unload from a dock straight to a truck that can take it straight to its ultimate destination, rather than a distribution facility. Anderson said Tradepoint looked at other Florida ports, including some “who are pretty much further ahead than us in where we want to be,” before choosing Tampa.
“We’re very intentional about our approach in who we partner with, because we think about things from a multigenerational perspective,” Doyle said. “We never exit out of businesses.”
After a development period of about two years, Tradepoint will pay the port $30,000 per acre, or just over $1 million per year, for four years. After that, the rent will increase 12.5% every five years. Doyle said Tradepoint will not ask for “any specific additional capital investment,” but may ask the port for easements and other forms of access. After 40 years, Tradepoint will have three options to extend the lease by 10 years.
“This is just phase 1,” Doyle said. “We think in terms of centuries, so we plan to be here for 40-plus years.”
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