A new logistics center could bring hundreds of jobs to Spartanburg County.
The center will be comprised of two Class A speculative, or spec, buildings totaling 559,000 square feet, as well as ample dock doors and blacktop space for employee parking, truck traffic, and trailer storage.
“We have been interested in investing in the Greenville-Spartanburg market with a project of this kind for some time,” said John Rooker, CEO of Rooker Development. “The metro area is experiencing population growth and job growth that significantly outpace the national average.”
“Greenville-Spartanburg is a diverse local economy, and it’s also a great regional location for both manufacturing and distribution operations thanks to its central location within the Atlanta-Charlotte-Raleigh [Interstate] 85 corridor mega-region,” Rooker added.
Rooker Development has purchased the land from Gibbs International, a diversified textile, energy, real estate, mining, and demolition firm founded in 1973 by local businessman and philanthropist Jimmy Gibbs.
Gibbs International still owns about 80 acres of surrounding property.
Rooker Development’s site plan shows a “Building 1” that will be 273,000 square feet, and a 286,000-square-foot “Building 2.”
Building 1 will be completed by late 2018.
Building 2, which Rooker said would be “a great option” for tenants who would prefer a build-to-suit or custom building, will be constructed as soon as the company finds a tenant for either building.
Rooker said the company will choose a general contractor for the project within the next 30 days.
Spartanburg-based Clary Hood is the site work contractor.
Rooker said he expects the project will support 100 construction jobs.
While the center’s impact on the county’s job growth will depend on the tenants it attracts, Rooker said similar projects his company has completed have created 100 to 400 jobs.
“Spartanburg County is a great place to do business,” Rooker said. “We have been very impressed by the professionalism of the county leadership, especially Katherine O’Neill and the Planning and Development department team.”
Rooker Development is a full-service real estate development, design, and construction management firm specializing in the industrial and government segments.
The company has completed projects across the Southeast and is currently building a two-story office building in Mauldin for the General Services Administration.
“It has been a pleasure to work with Rooker Development,” said Butch Genoble, head of real estate sales, leasing, and development for Gibbs International. “We are glad to see them expand their reach into Spartanburg County and looking forward to working with them in the future.”
Spartanburg County Councilman David Britt said the project will be a boon for local economic development, as well as efforts to enhance the interchange at I-85 and Highway 29.
Britt praised Jimmy Gibbs and Caz McCaslin, founder of Upward, and their teams for the work they have done to make the area more attractive to prospective investors, residents, and visitors.
“That area is ripe for development, and it’s a major gateway to Spartanburg,” Britt said. “For [Rooker Development] to make this investment, it shows their belief in Spartanburg County. I think it’s a bright move on their part and I congratulate them.”
Rooker Development has chosen Trey Pennington, senior vice president of CBRE’s Greenville office, to market and lease the center.