Initially, Goodwill Industries of Central Texas was seeking 30,000 to 40,000 sf of industrial space to relocate its storage for seasonal and janitorial/maintenance operations. After touring various sites, the client changed its requirement in order to open a northern outlet store, which would require 95,000+ sf.
Goodwill presented a unique challenge because they were looking for an industrial space in terms of economics and set-up, but the location also had to have retail-like components. Goodwill needed 25+ docks for its trucks and space to store equipment outside. It also needed traditionally retail features such as good visibility, substantial parking and easy access to the building and the space.
Also a challenge were the deal economics. Goodwill needed to secure great economics in order to make the site work within its budget, while also expanding to better serve its mission.
AQUILA is more than just a real estate brokerage. The AQUILA team is committed to Goodwill Central Texas as a partner, working side by side to ensure transactions are not only in our best interest, but also help to advance our mission. As our partner over the years they have spent innumerable hours answering questions and providing information because we needed help, regardless of whether it was related to a new real estate venture. They are our friends, partners, brokers and advisors all wrapped up in one.”
– Gerald L. Davis, President and CEO, Goodwill Central Texas
AQUILA and Goodwill identified Heritage Crossing, a Class A industrial project in North Austin being developed by Clarion Partners, as an ideal location for the northern outlet. Goodwill was intrigued by the visibility from I-35 and initially worked with the developer to negotiate a deal at the unbuilt Building 4, which would have been right at the freeway. After a few months of negotiations the deal fell apart, and Goodwill and AQUILA started to pursue alternate options.
After looking at several other viable options, Goodwill reengaged in a deal at Heritage Crossing. This time, the client began negotiations on Building 1, which was in the back of the project but still had great visibility.
This time, AQUILA was able to negotiate a better rental rate than had been discussed at Building 4. Our team was also able to get more parking as well as a dedicated pylon sign and building signage, which no one else at the site had and would be important for the retail component of the outlet.
Additionally, AQUILA worked with the landlord and developer to design a road that would serve Goodwill’s side of the building. Lastly, we were able to negotiate a large fenced storage area, which no other tenant in the park had.
Ultimately, Goodwill signed a 12-year, 95,270-sf lease. The deal met both Goodwill’s storage and outlet needs.
With the opening of its northern outlet, Goodwill will be able to greatly improve the logistics of their operations in Central Texas. Goodwill’s outlet locations are their most profitable retail centers, and this new income has allowed them to put more money to work for good into the Austin community.
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