UNION COUNTY — Union County’s investment in its newest spec building began to pay off this week when Union County Council voted to sell it to a firm that specializes in industrial development in rural communities for just over $1.5 million.
During its August meeting this past Tuesday, council voted unanimously to approve first reading of an ordinance selling the county spec building at 2 LSP Drive at the entrance of Commerce Park off US 176 to Agracel Inc. of Effingham, Illinois. Two more readings of the ordinance and a public hearing must be held before the sale is completed.
Supervisor Frank Hart said that Agracel will purchase the spec building from the county for just over $1.5 million. Hart said the sale of the building will enable the county to recoup its investment in the development of the property. He said the sale is also part of the county’s strategy of preparing the site for industrial recruitment.
“Agracel is a company that specializes in up-fitting buildings for manufacturing,” Hart said Wednesday afternoon. “It is part of our economic development strategy for developing that property for industry.
“I’m encouraged that we just got it completed and now we’ve got it sold and off the market so it can be developed for industrial use,” he said. “Also, the sale price reimburses the county its expense in building the spec building.”
The spec building site includes the 60,000 square-foot building itself, an adjacent 60,000 square-foot building pad, and an additional 45,000 square feet of open land. The pad and the additional land are there to accommodate any potential industrial expansion that may occur.
The building itself is currently an empty shell with a dirt floor which Hart said makes it easier for Agracel to develop the facility as it sees fit. He said the property has all the necessary utilities including power, water, sewer, and gas for industrial development as well as ready access to US 176.
Hart said that the spec building and its sale to Agracel is something the people of Union County can be proud of.
“We as a community came together to build a spec building and now it’s being sold,” Hart said. “This is an encouraging development for our community.”
According to its website (www.agracel.com), Agracel, was “established in 1986 by John M. ‘Jack’ Schultz, Agracel, Inc. humbly began as a farmland investment company. When looking to name the firm, two words kept surfacing: Agriculture and Excel. Thus our name was born (Agriculture + Excel = Agracel). As the years passed Agracel’s core focus turned from farm ground to industrial development in rural America.”
“Though our days of farmland investments are over, we have chosen to retain the Agracel name. We believe firmly in the principals set forth by our agricultural heritage. The name Agracel ties us to the land and the good things that farmers stand for. Excellence not only in agriculture, but in everything they do.”
“These principals have allowed Agracel to grow by leaps and bounds over the past 30 years. Today, Team Agracel has developed over 12 million sf (square feet) of industrial space in 17 states.”
The website states that the company’s mission is “to be the premier provider of development services to Agurb® communities, facilitating and retaining manufacturing and hi-tech jobs, resulting in a strong portfolio of buildings, thus creating long-term value for our stakeholders.”
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.