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Jax Daily Record Tuesday, Nov. 17, 202005:20 AM EST

City reviewing Benderson Development plans for North Jacksonville business park

The Sarasota company wants to build 2 million square feet of industrial space at I-95 and Pecan Park Road.

Benderson Development Co. LLC’s plans to start work on two industrial buildings totaling 2 million square feet of space in North Jacksonville continue through permitting.

Engineer Kimley-Horn and Associates Inc. filed civil engineering plans with the city Nov. 13 for Phases I and II.

In June it requested a service availability determination from JEA.

Florida-based Benderson Development said in April it intends to start work by the end of summer on its 203-acre industrial park at northeast Interstate 95 and Pecan Park Road.

Director of Development Todd Mathes said April 16 he is working with prospects for both proposed buildings – the 498,960-square-foot Building 100 and the almost 1.54 million-square-foot Building 200.

Asked if the prospects were e-commerce companies, Mathes said in April that “is a reasonable perspective.”

He could not be reached immediately for comment Nov. 16.

Rum East LLC, a Benderson entity, and related companies own the land.

Mathes would not comment on tenant names but said that the two deals for Benderson’s buildings “seem very serious” about Jacksonville. 

If tenants don’t sign for both buildings, Mathes said Benderson would start construction on the smaller building on a speculative basis.

Benderson is a privately held real estate company based in University Park near Sarasota. It says on its website that it owns and manages more than 700 properties totaling more than 40 million square feet in 38 states. Holdings include retail, office, industrial, hotel, residential and land.

Benderson applied to the St. Johns River Water Management District in April for an environmental resource permit. WRA Engineering of Tampa is the environmental consultant. The decision is pending.

WRA wrote in an April environmental report that the 203.27-acre project is a future commercial distribution center northeast of Jacksonville International Airport.

City agencies have been reviewing plans that show more than 2 million square feet of warehouse space.

In 2019, the city calculated mobility fees for two industrial warehouses designed on 46 acres north of Pecan Park Road between I-95 and North Main Street.

The mobility fees, calculated to mitigate the traffic impact, total $816,445. The applications are for horizontal development and the buildings.

The first phase is part of the almost 850 acres that Benderson bought in 2007. It acquired the bulk of the undeveloped land from Bacardi Bottling Corp. and about 15 acres from an affiliate of Signature Land Co.

The Bacardi Bottling Plant is at 12200 N. Main St., south of Benderson’s land.

The city approved the property’s planned unit development in 2008 as the Pecan Park Regional Activity Center. Benderson sought a minor modification last year to relocate the mix of commercial, office/business park and residential uses to a central location and placed 46 acres of light industrial next to I-95.

That is where the first two buildings are planned.

“This is our first phase. We have a lot of remaining land,” Mathes said.

Mathes said approvals for the first phase are pending in the city’s 10-set review for horizontal construction and the St. Johns River Water Management District.

Kimley-Horn’s documents show site development of about 187 acres on the southwest side of the property, with Pecan Park Road to the south and I-95 to the west.


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