Burleson Economic Development Corporation announced Oct. 18 that Yukon Ventures LLC will be opening a new refrigerated and cold storage distribution center in the Highpoint Business Park.

The project is a joint venture with Marty Khait, principal of Yukon Ventures and Anthony Rinaldi, managing partner of Saxum Real Estate. The entire project, which will involve new construction and state-of-the-art design and build out is projected to exceed $50 million.

"The City of Burleson, and specifically the Economic Development team, has been a pleasure to work with since the start of the RFP process. They've been responsive, fair, and eager to win our business for their community," said Marty Khait. "We're excited to break ground on our project, another much needed cold storage facility for the metroplex."

Alex Philips, economic development manager for the City of Burleson, noted Burleson’s recent success with the food industry.

"With the success our community has had over the past few years within the food industry it is a great achievement for our team to be able to be a part of an amazing development from Yukon Ventures and Saxum Real Estate," he said. "We look forward to the project progressing and welcoming them to Burleson's Highpoint Business Park. We truly are, Hometown, Done Right!"

The project is slated to start construction early 2020 with a scheduled completion in the fourth quarter of 2021. Premier Refrigerated Warehouse will be the anchor tenant leasing 200,000 square feet of the new facility upon completion.

"The incredible customer base in DFW, combined with the metroplex' world class distribution infrastructure creates an environment ideal for cold storage users,” said Khait. “We are excited to offer them another option with our project."

"We are incredibly happy that Yukon Ventures LLC selected Burleson as the location of their new 400,000 square-foot facility," said Burleson Mayor, Ken Shetter. "Yukon Ventures will become a vital piece of Highpoint Business Park, continuing to solidify Burleson as a city of choice for thriving businesses considering growth or expansion. Finally, when it comes to economic opportunity, I would encourage businesses to join Yukon Ventures and bet big on Burleson!"

Cold storage is – pun intended – hot right now. Earlier in October, Hunt Southwest Real Estate Development has secured a full-building lease on its recently completed DFW ColdSpot, which is believed to be the first-ever, cold storage facility built on a speculative basis in the nation. The firm inked a long-term lease of its nearly 300,000-square-foot building to Emergent Cold, the world’s fastest-growing cold chain solutions company.

DFW ColdSpot is located in the Carter Industrial Park in South Fort Worth at 8200 Will Rogers Blvd.

Texas has a growing inventory of cold storage developments and has the fourth highest inventory of cold-storage in the U.S. with 231.4 million cubic feet of space, according to a recent report from CBRE. The demand in Texas can be attributed to multiple factors, including explosive population growth coupled with a strong economy and a consumption zone that covers a large geographic area. The cold-storage space in Dallas, along with Houston, serves the entire state of Texas in addition to bordering states such as Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana.

Those factors are creating demand for up to 100 million square feet of cold-storage space over the next five years, according to the CBRE report.

According to David Sours, Senior Vice President, CBRE Food Facilities Group, the growth of cold-storage in the last year is unprecedented.

“In Texas, we saw more pallet positions added to capacity in the last year than we’ve ever seen in recent history,” Sours said. “This tracks back to population growth as well as more investment in material handling technologies for automation purposes.”

Historically there has been a shortage of existing cold-storage facilities nationally due to high replacement costs of technologies in addition to the critical nature of the facilities. While markets across the country continue to keep up with demand for cold-storage, experts predict several different factors will influence the cold-storage and food industry as a whole.

“The cold-storage sector and broader food industry continue to evolve nationally due to a variety of factors including changing consumer dietary and delivery preferences, growth in the frozen food sector, evolving technologies, population changes, and freight costs, among other drivers,” said Lucy Durbin, Vice President, CBRE Food Facilities Group.

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