Southpointe II land sales nearly complete

As buildout continues, Southpointe II’s land sales are nearly complete

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Southpointe II is down to one.


“There is only one parcel left,” said Bill Sember, director of operations for the Washington County Authority, which oversees property sales and infrastructure improvements in the mixed-use park in Cecil Township.


Except for that 10-acre tract, all properties designated for development have been finished or are under construction in Southpointe II, the 217-acre extension of the original Southpointe. Neither snow nor ice nor Icelandic temperatures has kept workers from their appointed rounds in the mixed-use park, which continues to evolve.


The third and final building in the Zenith Ridge project will likely be erected on that undeveloped parcel. Quattro Investment Group, an affiliate of Burns & Scalo Real Estate, holds the option on that land and plans a 150,000-square-foot structure.


Burns & Scalo, based in Green Tree, is developing Zenith Ridge, a business campus high on a hill and easily visible from Interstate 79.


Zenith I, the first building, will be the new headquarters for Ansys Inc., an engineering simulation software company currently operating in Southpointe’s Stealth Technology Center. It will have 186,000 square feet, accommodate all of Ansys’ 400-plus employees, and is targeted to open in October.


A second office building, with 150,000 square feet, is up and under cover and will have a mix of tenants. Work on Zenith II is a little behind the first structure and probably will be completed later in the fourth quarter of 2014.


Plans call for Zenith III to have 150,000 square feet of space. Work hasn’t begun, though. Jim Scalo, president and chief executive officer of Burns & Scalo, said in December that “once (Quattro gets) the second building 55 percent leased, the third building will start construction.”


Sember said the authority’s “goal is to sign a sales agreement with (Quattro on the undeveloped parcel) sometime in May.”


All three buildings are expected to accommodate up to 750 workers.


Kelley Hoover Heckathorne, leasing agent for Burns & Scalo, is marketing Zenith Ridge as “a three-building campus. It’s not in Town Center, but it’s within walking distance. And it’s within walking distance of two hotels, the Holiday Inn Express and Homewood Suites.”


Homewood Suites debuted in September 2009; the Express should open this spring.


Heckathorne said Zenith III “is more of a headquarters building for a large tenant. That tenant will have the naming rights for the building and the street in front of it.”


Zenith Ridge will be complemented by Town Center – and vice-versa. Town Center is a retail/residential/office project downhill from Zenith Ridge. Horizon Properties, lead developer of Southpointe II, is in charge of Town Center, which will be an anchor to this phase of Southpointe.


The two, two-story buildings comprising Town Center have been built, facing each other on Main Street. Each has 60,000 square feet, including 32,000 for retail on the first floor.


A number of retail components are on board, but a number of leases still have to be signed and much interior work has to be done. Mike Swisher, Horizon principal, did not repond to phone calls about specifics.


Swisher said in October that seven businesses had signed leases or letters of intent: All Star Sports Bar & Grill; Saga Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar; Let’s Yo (frozen yogurt); Crazy Mocha cafe; Zoup! (soups, salads); a PNC Bank branch; and Southpointe Nails.


The 34-acre Town Center campus also is home to Mylan Inc.’s new, 280,000-square-foot office building, which opened recently. Future features at the campus include a four-story, 376-unit apartment building that is under construction; a WesBanco bank branch; and a 207,000-square-foot office building.


The first building in Southpointe II, known as 1000 Town Center Way, opened in 2006. And while there was some initial development work to be done, Sember noted the authority never had to do much marketing of the parcels as companies quickly expressed a desire to become tenants there.


“We marketed it, but it was not a national marketing effort,” Sember said. “It kind of sold itself.”


Development was strongly advanced by the energy industry, with Consol Energy Inc. bringing its corporate headquarters there in August 2008, and Range Resources opening its regional headquarters in 2012. As the natural gas boom grew in the area, other companies in the energy supply chain also located operations in the mixed-use development.


Work on the 90-room Holiday Inn Express & Suites is on schedule, said Woody Weissinger, real estate advisor for Northpointe Development Group LLC of Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County, which is in charge of the project.


Weissinger anticipates a late April opening for the four-story, limited-service hotel that will include a large meeting room. Franjo Construction Corp. of Homestead is the contractor.


This will be the second hotel in Southpointe II, along with the nearby Homewood Suites, and third in the entire mixed-use park. The Hilton Garden Inn is in the original Southpointe.


More rooms in an area that now has little room to grow.


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