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Industrial Developments Planned in Temecula, Ontario

Warehousing: Inland Empire has earned a national reputation as a leading distribution center.


Developers have announced a 1.1-million-square-foot speculative industrial project in Ontario and a 412,580-square-foot build-to-suit industrial development in Temecula as the Inland Empire continues its growth as one of the country's leading warehousing and distribution centers.

The Ontario project, on 48 acres at the southeast corner of Mission Boulevard and Haven Avenue, is a $35-million development of the Long Beach office of Chicago-based Ridge Realty Group, which acquired the site recently from the DeGroot family trust.

The Temecula industrial facility will be developed by Los Angeles-based Kearny Real Estate Co. in a 15-year, $30-million lease for the Scotts Co., a supplier of lawn and garden products.

Construction of the Ontario project, called Ontario Ridge Commerce Center, is scheduled to begin this month and to be completed in June. The $35-million development cost includes $9 million that Ridge paid for the land, according to Dennis Rice, a Long Beach-based principal of Ridge.

Ontario Ridge will include three buildings of 741,458 square feet, 228,423 square feet and 113,398 square feet. It is being designed by architectural firm RKZ Inc. of Tustin, with Fullmer Construction Co. of Ontario as the general contractor.

Ron Washle, Roger Rhoades and Mark Kegans of Grubb & Ellis represented Ridge in the purchase of land for the project. Rick Bondar of McCune & Associates represented the DeGroot family trust.

The Temecula project, between Winchester Road and Remington Avenue at Diaz Road, will serve as regional manufacturing and distribution headquarters for the grass seed and fertilizer-spreader unit of Marysville, Ohio-based Scotts, supplier of Miracle-Gro and Ortho brand lawn and garden products. Construction is scheduled to begin this week and to be completed in August, according to David Simon, a Kearny senior vice president. He said the new facility will consolidate Scotts' operations in Temecula and Carlsbad.

The Scotts development, on 22.5 acres of a 55-acre parcel owned by Kearny, will be designed by architectural firm Smith Consulting and built by general contractor Keeton Construction, both of Temecula.

Kearny, an affiliate of the Morgan Stanley Real Estate Funds, owns the adjacent 223,000-square-foot Temecula Heights Corporate Center and is planning several multi-tenant and small office and industrial buildings for the site. Marty R. Smith and Allen Nunez of Coldwell Banker Commercial represented Kearny in the lease with Scotts. The Scotts Co. represented itself.

The Ridge and Kearny projects are among the most recent in a long series of developments that have earned the Inland Empire a national reputation as a distribution center that includes massive warehouses in and around Ontario. Experts attribute the phenomenon in large part to the plentiful land near freeways in Riverside and San Bernardino counties, enabling developers to build giant facilities with features and equipment required for modern warehousing methods.

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