By Mickey Shuey | Originally published in the Indianapolis Business Journal
The Indianapolis industrial market is growing at a record pace, continuing a trend that began in the months ahead of the coronavirus’ arrival in early 2020.
More than 22 million square feet of space is already under construction, with some brokerages estimating several million more will break ground by the end of the year. And markets that have begun heating up over the past few years—particularly Whiteland in Johnson County and Mount Comfort in Hancock County—are starting to see extensive development and leasing activity.
In Whiteland, Mohr Capital recently broke ground on multiple buildings of nearly 1 million square feet as part of its Mohr Logistics Park, at the northwest corner of Interstate 65 and Whiteland Road. Cooper Tire moved into its nearly 950,000-square-foot building at the park in the second quarter.
So far, 3.5 million square feet of space is under construction or has been completed on the property. The Mohr development could near 8 million square feet when it’s fully built out in the years ahead, occupying more than 500 acres—nearly the size of the downtown Indianapolis mile square.
Bob Mohr, chairman of Dallas-based Mohr Capital and an Indianapolis native, said what’s happening in Indianapolis is a national phenomenon, albeit one from which Indianapolis is benefiting.
“Industrial [development faced] a big whammy of everything being backed up because of the pandemic, causing significant disruption to global trade. Then you have corporations that are reconfiguring all of their supply chain,” he said. “When you combine those things together, you get a big blow-up in industrial requirements” that have led more companies to seek space.
Mohr said the move to build in Whiteland was driven by a host of factors, including land availability—and, in turn, lower costs—more appetite for incentives from the town, and a stronger labor pool driven by the scarcity of industrial buildings in the area.