Tulare’s industrial park catches eye of speculative developers

The city of Tulare welcomes CA Ventures who plans to build a 540,000-square foot speculative distribution center bringing hundreds of quality jobs to the city

TULARE – As Tulare continues to grow, a global real estate company has decided to stake its claim in Tulare and build a distribution center to bring hundreds of jobs to the city. 

CA Ventures, a global real estate investment management company, has purchased 76 acres of land in Tulare, on Paige Ave. The company aims to create a master industrial business park and is beginning with one initial 540,000 square foot speculative building. By bringing in distribution centers, the amount of quality jobs will increase in Tulare, starting the ball rolling with a boost in economic development. 

“We need to create more jobs in our city,” city manager Marc Modell said. “If we attract more employers, then we’re going to put our citizens in a better position to increase their wage level.”

CA Ventures is currently in the building plan review process and plans to break ground in December of this year. According to George Atalla, development manager with CA Ventures, they aim to complete the building in the fourth quarter of 2023. This is a speculative development, meaning CA Ventures does not have a tenant yet, but they expect to begin marketing for early prospects with Jones Lang LaSalle real estate in the coming weeks. 

CA Ventures is looking for a company who seeks to customize a facility in terms of layout and sizing who is also looking to begin construction soon. There is a large pool of prospective business models they are looking into.

“We anticipate prospective tenants to be those looking to service all of California and significant parts of Nevada with one-day delivery, shipping and package delivery companies, regional and national distribution companies, retailers, agricultural supportive warehousing, food production and distribution and light assembly,” Atalla said.

The 540,000 square foot building is the first phase of the project and will have the ability to be expanded up to 1.1 million square feet. The business that moves in will have the ability to expand, and if they do not need the expansion, CA Ventures will build an additional building of a comparable size for a separate company. In addition to this 1.1 million square feet, CA Ventures also has the option to purchase an additional 80 acres of available real estate on adjacent property to produce additional warehousing, equaling a total of over 2 million square feet of distribution.  

As the Central Valley is a major hub for agricultural production and distribution, it allows for a unique shipping advantage over other areas in California because of it is location to major ports. 

“Tulare County, in particular, is within easy reach of both northern and southern California, so from a distribution logistics standpoint, we are very well located,” deputy city manager Josh McDonnell said. “That’s why we’re getting these types of projects done.”

The Tulare site will have the ability to provide tenants with one-day delivery services via ground transportation to most zip codes in the state according to Atalla. 

Atalla said he feels the demand for ecommerce-related services will continue to grow in Tulare throughout the years. “Demand [is] already evident in Ace Hardware, UPS, Walmart, Amazon and Target’s recent moves to the Central Valley South area,” Atalla said. 

The city of Tulare is welcoming this business with open arms, and Atalla said the city has been exceptionally easy to work with. McDonnell said it fits the mold of exactly what Tulare’s industrial park is hoping to become. He said Tulare would love to add additional distribution and manufacturing centers as well.

“Historically, industrial developments are focused on the ag industry,” McDonnel said. “We want to encourage that as much as possible, but we also want to diversify. So something like a distribution center that wouldn’t necessarily be an ag based distribution center is a great addition.”

Bringing CA Ventures into Tulare is just the first step in a greater plan. Tulare is in the process of spreading its wings to expand economic development throughout. The city is in the process of creating an economic development plan and Mondell said bringing in these distribution centers is a big part of it. 

“The more jobs we have, the more people we’ll attract, which means we’ll build more homes,” Mondell said. “The more homes we have, the more people who have expendable income means the more retailers we will attract. There’s a direct relationship between all of those things.”

Mondell said warehouse jobs are typically better than standard minimum wage paying jobs, and have better benefits. Warehouses like Target pay from $20 to $23 an hour with health insurance. Ace Hardware offers $20 to $21 an hour with health insurance as well. 

“When you look at our workforce, we have about 60% Hispanic population, there’s a lot of folks that are working in the ag industry, which is great, we need them,” Mondell said. “But in my mind, warehouse distribution is sort of a step up from ag laborers, moves you up into a higher income bracket.”

If this project is successful, Tulare will be able to market themselves to additional distributors and show the 1,000’s of acres of undeveloped land near Highway 99. 

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