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This article by Melinda Sherwood was published in U.S. 1 Newspaper on October 6, 1999. All rights reserved.
East Windsor’s Ray
East Windsor may never be New Jersey’s answer to Silicon
Valley, but when aerospace giant Lockheed Martin abandoned its 128-acre
site on Route 571 last year, several high-tech companies swooped down
to swallow up the newly vacated buildings. Still remaining, however,
are several hundred acres of land primed for commercial development.
One of the area’s finest selling points: the nearly-completed Route
133 Hightstown bypass, a four-lane highway which promises to turn
a congested 15-minute journey between Route 571 and the New Jersey
Turnpike into a short jog.
"Every project has a day in the sun, and the sun is now shining
on East Windsor," says John Buschman of Buschman Partners at 993
Lenox Drive. His agency is in a leasing partnership with GMH Realty
to develop the former Lockheed property, now known as Windsor Corporate
Park, which includes 110 acres of land and a 300,000 square foot office
building just east of the new bypass on Route 571. "I expect to
drag people from New York and Staten Island who can save $5 or $6
million over time. Without the bypass, it would be impossible."
Just opposite Windsor Corporate Park lies a 100-acre tract of build-to-suit
land owned by DKM, which also contains a 60,000-foot building, 104
Mayor Janice S. Mironov and members of the township’s Economic Development
Committee are holding an open house to promote these two properties
to developers and the high-tech community on Wednesday, October 13,
at 9:30 a.m. at the Coelacanth Corporation at 279 Princeton-Hightstown
Road. Call 609-443-4000.
"Location is one of our prime assets," says Mironov, a Wellesley
graduate and lawyer who worked for the state attorney general’s office.
"The companies that relocate here have easy access to the Turnpike,
Newark Airport, the Princeton Junction train station, and a large
pool of skilled workers."
Another asset is the full cooperation of township officials. When
Lockheed Martin closed its satellite operation, some believed East
Windsor Township would go into a tailspin. Instead the municipality
appointed a liaison to grease the wheels between the township and
developers. "We created a business ombudsman, a one stop shopping
set-up so businesses can have a direct friend and also, quite honestly,
give them some sense of their reception by the policy makers,"
And so from the ashes of corporate downsizing, six new high-tech companies
emerged. Shiseido America, Coelacanth, Lavipharm, i-Stat, Blacklight
Power, and Evans East all moved to Route 571. "There were existing
sites on 571 so it was easy and convenient for companies to move right
in with the first phase of their operations," says Mironov. "With
the opening of the bypass in a matter of weeks, that location will
become even more superior linkage to the NJ Turnpike."
GMH Realty, which bought Windsor Corporate Park for $12 million, demolished
most of the 1.1 million square-foot factory on the site, except for
a 300,000 square feet building that it gutted and is refurbishing.
To be delivered in January, 2000, the stucco building will be visible
from the bypass. "The building is going to get new windows, new
skin, new roofs, and all new landscaping," says Brian Glancey
of GMH. The asking price, says Glancey: $19.99 per square feet plus
tenant electric for any deal over 50,000 square feet signed before
the end of the year. Financial firms, insurance companies, and high
tech companies have all already shown interest, says Glancey. "Our
differential in price is certainly a distinctive feature," he
says. "Down on Route 1 rates go anywhere from $27 to $30 plus
Tenants of Windsor Corporate Park also get an enormous amount of parking,
roughly 7 spaces per 1,000 square feet of leased property. A ratio
of 3 to 4 per 1,000 feet is more typical, says Glancey.
Phase Two of GMH’s plans involve developing the remaining 110 acres
at Windsor Corporate Park, on a build-to-suit basis, says Glancey.
"When it’s all said and done it’s going to be a dramatic renovation,"
Gale and Wentworth manages the property at 104 Windsor Center. Kris
Bauman of Gale and Wentworth says this property will also be sold
on a build-to-suit basis. "We’re targeting the property for high-tech
and pharmaceutical," he says.
— Melinda Sherwood
An organization for commercial real estate brokers hopes
to make inroads into New Jersey. The TriState Commercial & Industrial
Association of Realtors will hold a meeting on Wednesday, October
13, at 5:30 p.m. at Forsgate Country Club.
Alexander Taylor, chief operating officer of Matrix Development
Group, will speak about "What’s Next in Central Jersey in the
new millennium." Any professional specializing in commercial and
industrial real estate may attend as a guest. Register by October
7 at 609-239-7470 or fax 610-239-7472.
On the TriState web page http://www.tristate.propertyline.com)
are featured banners from many prominent real estate organizations:
NAI, Brandywine Development, Grubb & Ellis, Re/Max, and Colliers International,
For information on TriState call George Gati, New Jersey vice
president, at 609-419-9100. Gati is a broker at 13 Roszel Road (E-mail
firstname.lastname@example.org) who focuses on finding properties for client investment.
The Tri-State organization, based in Bridgeport, Pennsylvania, offers
membership to realtors who belong to a multiple listing service.
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