Distributors, logistics firms and e-commerce purveyors alike have flocked to Polk County because of its central Florida location, sophisticated highway network that connects Interstate 4 with Interstate 75 and Interstate 95 and its ability to reach roughly 18 million customers within a 24-hour drive.
Although Davenport has emerged as a distribution site for the likes of Wal-Mart, FedEx, Amazon and others, and Medline Industries Inc. and Coca-Cola have chosen Auburndale to fulfill customer orders, Lakeland has remained the epicenter for industrial space in Polk County.
Publix Super Markets Inc., Rooms-to-Go and Amazon are but a few of the companies that have chosen Lakeland to distribute goods from, thanks to its established road network, abundant land and proximity to population centers.
In all, Polk County has roughly 57 million square feet of industrial space -- roughly equivalent to the total amounts in Hernando, Manatee, Pasco and Sarasota counties combined.
And thanks to Amazon, Wal-Mart and others, another 705,000 square feet of industrial space is under construction in the county.
Industrial vacancy rate in Polk County as of the end of the third quarter of last year. By comparison, the Tampa-St. Petersburg market as a whole posted a 5.9% vacancy rate as of Sept. 30.
Number of Polk County industrial buildings delivered in 2016 through Sept. 30 that ranked among the top 10 completions by building size.
Average price per square foot for all industrial space in Polk County at the end of the third quarter. The entire submarket averaged $5.61, but that figure includes so-called “flex” space that contains a mix of office and warehouse space, as well as pure distribution space.
Amount of industrial square feet absorbed in Polk County between July 1 and Sept. 30, a figure that topped the Tampa-St. Petersburg area and accounted for nearly half of all space taken. Hillsborough County was the second most active area, with 1.34 million square feet absorbed.
Largest industrial lease signed in Polk County through three quarters of 2016. HD Supply committed to the space in the Four Corners Business Park. United Natural Foods was responsible for the largest industrial lease of the year through Sept. 30, after it took nearly 460,000 square feet in the Meridian Distribution Center, in Sarasota County.
Largest Polk County industrial sale between July 1 and Sept. 30. Exeter Property Group, a Pennsylvania company, acquired the 815,925-square-foot property from and affiliate of Ares Capital Corp.
The largest industrial building under construction in the Tampa-St. Petersburg market. McCraney Property Co. was scheduled to complete building III in its Park 27 Distribution Center in Polk County, around the end of the year.