Originally published on Idaho Business Review
By: Kurt Orzeck, April 19, 2022
Any conversation about Nampa inherently involves the word “growth.” But a more accurate description of the city, particularly from the perspective of its industrial expansion, would warrant the term “exploding.” In September, the Nampa Development Corporation (NDC) announced it had partnered with Adler Industrial LLC to develop a $10 million industrial park located in North Nampa.
In January, Colliers said it had been assigned a leasing advisory for a new industrial site, Madison Logistics Center, just north of Karcher Road near the northside interchange in Nampa. That same month, Newmark Group Inc. announced it was awarded the exclusive leasing assignment for Boulevard Logistics on North Caldwell Boulevard. And earlier this month, Trammell Crow Company (TCC) announced it had broken ground on the Kings Road Commerce Center, the firm’s first industrial development in Idaho. Robyn Sellers, who took on the role of Nampa’s economic development director six months ago, spoke with the Idaho Business Review about how the city is flourishing. “In the last two years, the number of national developers and local developers who have bought property has exploded,” she said. “We’ve had just a ton of interest.” Sellers emphasized that burgeoning growth is not a new phenomenon in Nampa. After all, the city was established with a railroad and aligned with a manufacturing base.
“Nampa has always been an industrial-based community,” she said. Turning back the clock, Amalgamated Sugar Company began operating a bulk sugar storage factory in the early 1940s. Food processing further settled into Nampa — in part for its strong agricultural background — with Sorrento Lactalis, Gogo Squeeze maker Materne North America and Mother Earth Brewing Company. “Food processing makes sense when you look at the base that started with the railroads, and each of those companies had their own reasons for choosing Nampa,” Sellers said. “Sorrento wanted to be in the vicinity of dairy farms. Materne wanted proximity to apples; they’re a European-owned company with a manufacturing facility in Michigan, but they wanted a plant in the West.” Trailer manufacturing and electronics manufacturing are woven into the fabric of the city’s history as well. Not to be overlooked is the 2006 urban renewal plan that spawned NDC and spurred reannexation then rezoned light industrial areas to attract large industrial developers to Nampa and purchase the property. The plan clearly succeeded, as Nampa soon attracted the likes of TCC, one of the biggest developers and commercial real estate developers in the United States. Jim Mahoney, the principal, cited the area’s low vacancy rate of 1-1.5% as the main driver for industrial growth.
“Every one of the new residents (in Treasure Valley) needs electrical, plumbing, and other infrastructure,” Mahoney said. “They drive the need for space.” Indeed, the new industrial facilities and sites are gobbling up a mind-boggling amount of space. In December, TCC finalized the land acquisition for the Kings Road Commerce Center, situated on a 25-acre site on East Comstock Avenue. The center, which will include 362,000 square feet of manufacturing and logistics space across three buildings, broke ground in early March and is expected to deliver in the fourth quarter of 2022. Ware Malcomb is the project’s architect, Kimley Horn is the civil engineer and ESI Construction is the general contractor.
The Adler industrial park at Midland Boulevard, facilitated by the company reaching a rezoning arrangement with city officials in 2019, encompasses 194 acres near transportation corridors and the Union Pacific Railroad. Adler Industrial stated in September that it would finish utility extensions for water, sewer, and roadway improvements in an effort to boost development and job opportunities — in the manufacturing, distribution, and food processing sectors in particular. In February, Adler Industrial announced the first development on the site will be a new $143 million, 550,000-square-foot manufacturing facility by The Stow Company, which creates custom closet organizers and other home organization systems. The project is expected to be completed in May of 2023.
“Development projects like these ensure that stable, good-paying jobs remain in our community and help to build a strong tax base that keeps Nampa an independent city and not a bedroom community,” NDC Board of Commissioners Chairman Grant Miller said in a statement.
Madison Logistics Center, the first new-build by LDK Ventures in Idaho, recently broke ground and will consist of three buildings ranging from 23,000 to 345,000 square feet. LDK said in January that it had acquired more land and will roll out more projects in Treasure Valley. “LDK Ventures is a great developer to have in the Treasure Valley market, as they build high-quality institutional projects, are responsive to tenants’ needs, and are very competent in their development pursuits,” Industrial Associate Partner Devin Ogden said in a statement.
Finally, Newmark said in January that its new project, located on a 36.84-acre site, will start construction in summer 2022 and feature two industrial buildings totaling 685,260 square feet. Newmark Senior Managing Director Sherry Schoen said developer Panattoni — a global real estate development company that specializes in industrial projects — “has designed a best-in-class product that we are sure will receive intense leasing interest from both existing industrial tenants and those who are new to the area.”
Newmark’s statement mentioned that, as of January, demand had outpaced inventory additions for four straight quarters. Mahoney echoed that sentiment. “Prior to COVID, we were going to deliver 4 to 5 million products by last year,” he said. “Now, we have to wait to see how the market responds, and how quickly. We are still hoping to build 5 million, but disruption in the supply chain has caused suppliers not to be able to sell.” He continued: “When supplies are ordering now, they’re just increasing demand, because there is so little inventory. It becomes a matter of ‘just in time’ or ‘just in case.’’ For Nampa, it appears that — once again — the time for industrial expansion is now.