Major tenant signs up for Antrim business park

This drawing shows the area of and around Antrim Commons Business Park.

Antrim Commons Business Park snagged a major client. Developer Atapco Properties, Inc. and Chesapeake Real Estate Group, LLC announced late Tuesday that Armada Supply Chain Solutions will lease a new 400,000 square foot facility in the park located in the area of Exit 3 of Interstate 81.

No information on the potential of jobs to be created by the warehouse development was available at presstime.

Armada, a logistics management company that creates supply chain solutions for the restaurant and food industries, will more than double the size of its current northeast location in Chambersburg. The state of the art facility will be Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design-certified and is expected to be operational in late 2013.

Pat Coggins, vice president of development, told the Echo Pilot by phone Tuesday that he and Atapco were excited to kick off the business park. The recent adoption of the Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance (LERTA) program, by Antrim Township and Greencastle-Antrim School District, played “a huge role” in Armada’s site selection. He was reluctant to disclose the length of the lease, but said the tenant would invest a lot of money in the property.

Ironically one of the streets in the park is Armada Drive, the name the street already had when Atapco purchased the property several years ago.

Coggins also did not know how many jobs would be created, but thought Armada would consolidate its Franklin County operations in Greencastle.

Armada will be situated at the northwest corner of Armada Drive and Antrim Commons Drive. Coggins said the apt name was because the parent company had been under contract with the previous landowner. When Atapco bought the tract, the contract was abandoned for years, and negotiations revved up in the past year. During that time, Armada worked on some internal logistics, Coggins said.

Coggins did not know if Armada considered other locations for its warehouse. He added that with Norfolk Southern opening its intermodal terminal next year, and the LERTA program, the interest of several companies in the business park had been piqued.

John Burke, Armada CEO of the Pittsburgh-based company, said in the press release, “We are pleased to expand our operations in the northeast as a result of our continued growth. This region is an ideal location for one of our logistics centers and we look forward to being a part of the revitalization of the area.” 

  Atapco expressed thanks to Congressman Bill Shuster, Pennsylvania State Senator Richard Alloway, the Antrim Township Board of Supervisors and Franklin County Area Development Corporation “for their unwavering support of this project through a difficult economic period. Shuster was instrumental in helping obtain Federal Transportation Bill funds to reconfigure and improve the dated Exit 3 interchange. Alloway assisted Atapco in procuring low interest financing from the Pennsylvania Industrial Bank, as well as a grant for public infrastructure construction from the Pennsylvania Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program. The Antrim Township supervisors and FCADC  worked diligently to successfully adopt the LERTA tax abatement for the property in order to further incentivize the transaction.”

Shuster commented in the press release, "Economic development is a top priority and this is exciting news for our community. Our strong infrastructure system is critical to attracting investment and good paying jobs to our region from companies like Armada Supply Chain Solutions. I looking forward to continuing to work together to support Franklin County and create jobs.”

 Alloway added, “This is great news for Franklin County and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Armada’s decision to locate in the Antrim Commons Business Park is significant and will spur further development at one of the most attractive sites along the I-81 corridor. I commend all those who worked together to bring this project to fruition.”

Atapco and Chesapeake are developing the Antrim Commons site, which sits just north of the Maryland/Pennsylvania border. The business park will contain more than 4 million square feet of industrial space as well as other office, retail and light commercial uses and is expected to accommodate as many as 2,000 new jobs when fully developed. The project is located at Exit 3 on Interstate 81.