ProLogis, an owner and developer of distribution facilities, said Monday that it has acquired 184 acres in Wilmington, Ill., where it will build a new distribution park to serve BNSF Railway's largest intermodal facility in the Chicago area.
ProLogis said the first phase of development will cover more than 3.2 million square-feet of industrial space at full build-out with a total investment of $120 million. Further planned development phases will provide nearly 7 million square-feet of additional warehouse space on land that it holds an option to buy.
The ProLogis facility, called ProLogis Park Arsenal, is located at the former Joliet Arsenal site, a former Army munitions plant that closed in the early 1990s. It's about 60 miles southwest of Chicago on Interstate 55. In addition to the land it has acquired, ProLogis has an option for another 591 acres at the same site that it will use for future expansion.
"BNSF's intermodal facility is a vital link in the North American supply chain," said Doug Kiersey, ProLogis senior vice president and regional director of capital deployment, in a statement. "It serves as a key distribution hub for containerized goods flowing from West Coast seaports through the inland port of Chicago to markets throughout the eastern third of the U.S.
"Over time it will play an even greater role, as BNSF proceeds with plans to expand the capacity of its rail network serving Chicago."
BNSF opened its Logistic Park-Chicago in 2002. It provides a direct rail link to the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, as well as the ports of Oakland, Seattle and Tacoma.
ProLogis said it will begin site preparation and infrastructure work in the near future, with completion of the first distribution centers expected in the first half of 2008. The first phase will feature a mix of inventory and build-to-suit facilities, it said.