LEDC confirms FedEx coming to Lindale
Six years ago, when the Lindale Industrial Park was in the planning stages, officials with the Lindale Economic Development Corporation envisioned the arrival of a bigname tenant to anchor the facility.
Living up to its reputation, FedEx has delivered.
LEDC President John Clary has confirmed the global courier and delivery giant will be located in a 163,000 square foot distribution center in the Industrial Park on 17.7 acres, with construction expected to be completed in a little over a year.
FedEx officials said the new distribution center will replace the company’s two Tyler locations.
The transaction was completed last week, with the LEDC selling the land to Tyler FXG LLC, a subsidiary of Jones Development of Kansas City, Mo., which began construction of the facility for FedEx Ground this week.
“When the new facility opens, positions will transfer from the existing stations, and we will add to the workforce as necessary to support increased demand for service in the area,’’ officials said.
The site was chosen, officials said, because of its ease of access to major highways, its proximity to customers’ distribution centers and a strong, local community workforce for recruiting employees.
Also, the new facility is part of a nationwide network expansion to boost daily package volume capacity and further “enhance the speed and service capabilities of the FedEx Ground network.’’
Since 2005, the company has opened 11 new hubs featuring “the most advance materialhandling systems and expanded or relocated more than 500 local facilities,’’ officials said.
“The network enhancements have resulted in accelerating ground service delivery by one day or more in more than two-thirds of the United States,’’ according to the release. “FedEx delivers more than 61 percent of packages in two days or less and more than 82 percent of packages in three days or less.’’
“We are particularly pleased with the announcement that our first occupant in our new Lindale Industrial Park is such a nationally recognized company as FedEx,’’ said LEDC Board Chairman, Barham Fulmer.
“This announcement is reflective of a great deal of cooperation and hard work by John Clary, the LEDC Board, and the (Lindale) City Council and staff. It demonstrates how much we can accomplish as a team. We look forward to many similar announcements in the future fueled by the great cooperative spirit in Lindale.”
“It is unusual for a new industrial park to land its first tenant this quickly, but the industrial park is in a great location, has excellent I-20 access and shows well,’’ Clary said. “It won’t be long before another company comes calling.’’
He also noted how “supportive the LEDC Board and Lindale City Council has been in working through the many details involved and how good Jones Development is to work with.”
“I feel this project is due to John Clary’s dedication and hard work. I also appreciate the work put in by both current and former board members,” said LEDC Board Secretary Annie Baldwin.
Lindale City Council members approved a request by Clary and the LEDC to subdivide a 121- acre plat in the park during a February meeting.
And while the deal was finalized in the past week, Clary said negotiations with FedEx have been ongoing since August, 2011.
“We are thrilled to have been selected by FedEx Ground as the developer of this Project,’’ said Chris Jones of Jones Development Company. “ We value our relationship with FedEx Ground and look forward to partnering with them on yet another state-of-the-art facility.”
The local facility marks the 11th facility that Jones Development Company has developed in Texas and the 57th for FedEx Ground.
Realizing that Lindale needed industrial park land, in 2007 the LEDC Board of Directors, under the direction of James K. “Red’’ Brown, sought acreage along I-20 to acquire for development of a future industrial park.
Board members purchased 135 acres north of I-20 and 120 acres south of I-20. Subsequently these became known as the Lindale Business Park (north parcel) and Lindale Industrial Park (south parcel).
When a biomass power company indicated its desire to develop a facility in Lindale, LEDC board members – who had been planning to develop both parcels – focused on the south parcel.
The power plant didn’t become a reality, but it served to help LEDC obtain a matching grant for infrastructure for the Park. Planning, design, engineering and construction of the infrastructure would take four years.
Basic infrastructure in Lindale Industrial Park was completed in March 2012. What wasn’t widely known at the time was that the LEDC was already six months into negotiations for the FedEx distribution center.
LEDC had received an inquiry from a real estate professional on Aug. 31, 2011 seeking a site for a projected 100,000 square foot distribution center on 10 acres. The name of the company was not divulged at the time.
Founded in 1971 by 28-year-old Frederick W. Smith as Federal Express Corporation, FedEx now operates all across the U.S. and 211 other countries, providing 24-to-48 hour delivery of timesensitive cargo anywhere in the world.
By 2012, the company reported total assets of nearly $30 billion and just over $17 billion in total equity.