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Land deal expands business park in Berkeley County

January 02, 2013|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | matthewu@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — The Berkeley County Development Authority said Wednesday that it purchased 340 additional acres to expand Tabler Station Business Park and can now market the facility to attract some of the nation’s largest industrial employers.

Development Authority Executive Director Stephen Christian wouldn’t reveal the purchase price, but indicated the economic development organization used the majority of a $2 million loan from the state Infrastructure & Jobs Development Council to buy the land.

“It’s not hard to figure out it was a good deal for the development authority,” Christian said.

The remaining loan money was used to complete a large water and sewer improvement project at Cumbo Yard Industrial Park off Exit 16 of Interstate 81 northwest of Martinsburg, Christian said.

The 340-acre parcel purchased from PNC Bank increases the amount of available acreage for development in Tabler Station Business Park to more than 580 acres, according to Christian.

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The park is south of Martinsburg off Exit 8 of I-81 between the highway and U.S. 11.

The additional land was previously considered for residential development, but American Homes, the company that proposed the housing project, went “belly up,” Christian said.

The development authority closed on the real estate deal with the bank on Dec. 28, according to Christian.

Christian said he had been working on the purchase for about a year.

“We have significant I-81 frontage now,” Christian said.

With the purchase, Tabler Station Business Park can now accommodate nearly 6 million square feet of development.

Christian added that there aren’t many large sites available along the I-81 corridor.

Tabler Station Business Park was created from the development authority’s purchase of 326 acres of what was known as the Criswell farm in 2004. That land was purchased for $4.1 million.

The park’s current tenants include Allmine Paving LLC, doing business as AMP; a branch of the 167th TFR Federal Credit Union; and Verizon Wireless also acquired property for a cellular tower.

The newly acquired acreage north of the original business park also is farmland, according to Christian.

While the land acquisition is expected to help the county compete for large economic development projects, Christian said completion of the water and sewer work at Cumbo Yard Industrial Park allows the development authority to provide service to the existing Macy’s fulfillment center as well as other future development there.

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