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Lots of space: Business building permits up in Elgin

Elgis filling thousands square feet office or industrial space like this locatinear intersectiGalvDrive Northwest Parkway. | Mike Danahey / Sun-Times

Elgin is filling thousands of square feet of office or industrial space like this location near the intersection of Galvin Drive and Northwest Parkway. | Mike Danahey / Sun-Times Media

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Updated: March 26, 2014 6:02AM



ELGIN — The amount of commercial and industrial space in Elgin is on the rise.

The Elgin Development Group (EDG) — a division of the Elgin Area Chamber of Commerce commissioned by the city for business-related projects — recently reported that building permits issued in 2013 for new commercial/industrial buildings totaled 459,000 square feet.

By comparison, permits were issued allowing 366,000 square feet to be built in 2012; for 361,000 square feet in 2011; 584,000 square feet in 2010, and 161,000 square feet in 2009.

According to an EDG release, “The building surge in 2010 is largely attributed to the expansion at Elgin Community College made possible by the referendum, which successfully passed in 2009.”

The biggest development from 2013 was Northwest Pointe, with 342,000 square feet.

Elgin Area Chamber of Commerce President Carol Gieske said that Northwest Pointe is immediately north of Northwest Corporate Business Park and south of Route 72 and west of Randall Road, at 2501 Galvin Drive. It was developed by Conor Commercial Real Estate & Globe Corporation. Construction was completed late last year.

“Building was speculative, and there is strong interest by several tenants at this time looking for modern, efficient space with 32-foot clearance ceilings in a Class A environment,” Gieske said.

According to the commercial real estate-related Square Feet Blog, Class A structures “represent the highest quality buildings in their market. They are generally the best looking buildings with the best construction, and possess high-quality building infrastructure. Class A buildings also are well-located, have good access, and are professionally managed. As a result of this, they attract the highest-quality tenants and also command the highest rents.”

No city incentives

While Elgin has courted developers and businesses to come to town with incentive packages, none were used for these projects.

“Developer analysis identified Elgin and this area as an ideal location for Class A speculative development,” Gieske said.

As for the remaining growth in square footage, Gieske said the projects represent Elgin companies expanding. The work included Newhaven Display International building an additional 26,500 square feet at 2661 Galvin Court.; DYNACAST adding 30,105 square feet at 195 Corporate Drive.; LEF Elgin adding 52,000 square feet at 1760 Capital St.; Circle K adding 3,700 square feet for a Shell gas station at 460 S. McLean Blvd.; and Henkel Adhesives building 4,200 square feet at its 1345 Gasket Drive location.

Of course, more space should mean more jobs, and Gieske noted that as one example, New Haven expects to add 10 to 20 full-time and 5 part-time employees.

“And Conor/Globe Northwest Pointe has 343 parking spaces — allowing for high employment parking when the building is occupied,” she said.

As for what is drawing businesses to Elgin, Gieske said, “Companies are seeking greater efficiency through the use of modern Class A space. We expect to see continued migration of companies from older inefficient space, many from Cook County, to consider Elgin.”

Other draws include Elgin already being home to an array of the world’s leading companies, Gieske said. The skilled workforce and Kane County’s relatively low county tax rates help, too, as do local amenities including health care facilities, hotels and restaurants.

“There is convenient access to Interstate 90 and O’Hare International Airport from Elgin, and there are built-to-suit opportunities here with some exposure to I-90,” she said.

“There also is Class A space available for immediate occupancy up to 343,000 square feet,” Gieske noted.



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