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Manatee-Sarasota
Business Observer Friday, Jul. 15, 2016 3 years ago

Port Manatee Commerce Owner Selling

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The owner of the six-building Port Manatee Commerce Center in Manatee County is working to sell the 310,000- square-foot industrial complex, a deal that could fetch in excess of $25 million.
by: Kevin McQuaid Commercial Real Estate Editor

The owner of the six-building Port Manatee Commerce Center in Manatee County is working to sell the 310,000- square-foot industrial complex, a deal that could fetch in excess of $25 million.

Federal Port Corp., which developed the Palmetto complex adjacent to the Port of Manatee, has retained commercial real estate brokerage firm JLL to market the complex.

“We're looking at this project through a variety of lenses,” says Ryan Vaught, a JLL official who is representing Federal Port in its efforts. “We're considering either leasing it to a large user or selling the complex outright, because we also feel it's well suited to an owner/occupant.”

Federal Port, a firm led by developer Stanley Riggs, according to state records, constructed the Port Manatee Commerce buildings between 2002 and 2006.

The 2300-2350 S. Dock St. property is currently 90% occupied, Vaught says, though many tenants are on relatively short-term leases. The largest of the six buildings measures 90,000 square feet, Vaught says.

While Federal Port developed the site outside the Port of Manatee fence, the 18-acre property is rail served by a CSX Corp. line. Vaught says that railroad line and 24-hour access to the commerce center provide maximum transportation flexibility for users.

Port Manatee Commerce, near the site where liquefied natural gas equipment maker Air Products & Chemicals built a $50 million manufacturing plant in 2014, comes on the market as major transportation changes are afoot globally.

Most notably, the recent opening of the extended Panama Canal could provide a boost to Port Manatee and the commerce center. The port is the closest U.S. seaport to both the Panama Canal and the Port of Mariel, in Cuba.

Port officials also project cargo volume there to double over the next decade.

“Stanley and his partner have done an amazing job managing this asset, and with the opening of the canal, they felt it was a good time to test the market for this product,” Vaught says.

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