Transwestern Development Co. has added roughly 352,000 square feet of state-of-the-art industrial space to a hungry Atlanta-area market with the delivery of Battle Creek Logistics Center. Transwestern completed the speculative development at 1412 Battle Creek Road in Jonesboro, Ga., after having broken ground on the project in November 2019.
“In a challenging year, the industrial sector has been a bright spot for Atlanta, attracting users and investors to an asset class with consistently strong demand,” Steve Kros, regional partner with Transwestern Development Co., told Commercial Property Executive. Located in the South Atlanta submarket just across from Norfolk Southern Railway and 11 miles from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Battle Creek Logistics has been well received since its completion just before the New Year. “We responded to over 1 million square feet of prospective leases in 2020 and expect to sign our first tenant sometime this quarter,” Kros said. CBRE is spearheading leasing on behalf of Transwestern.
Kros credits the strong interest in Battle Creek Logistics to pent-up demand in the metropolitan Atlanta market. “E-commerce continues to be the biggest driver of absorption, as it didn’t experience a pause or slowdown due to of the pandemic. In fact, we’ve seen an acceleration of e-commerce absorption since the start of the pandemic,” Kros said. According to Transwestern research, metropolitan Atlanta recorded more than 15 million square feet of annual absorption in 2020, much of which can be attributed to e-commerce and logistics users. And South Atlanta performed particularly well. “South Atlanta has been in high demand due to its location near the airport and easy access to the coast,” he added. “While there was a slowdown in deals unrelated to e-commerce during the summer and fall, these deals have started to come back to market.”
The View Ahead
Transwestern, which currently has 3.6 million square feet of industrial projects under construction or in pre-development stages across the Southeast U.S., plans to pursue additional development opportunities in the Greater Atlanta area to address existing and pending demand.
At the close of the third quarter of 2020, roughly 20.2 million square feet of industrial space was under construction, and 11 million square feet had already delivered in the first nine months of the year, according to Transwestern research. However, the company is undeterred by the proliferation of development activity. “There may be pockets of oversupply in certain submarkets, but from a macro perspective, overall supply and demand in the Atlanta MSA are pretty well in balance,” Kros told CPE.
Last October, the company kicked off construction for Piscataway Logistics Center a two-property industrial project totaling approximately 300,000 square feet in Piscataway, N.J.