May 19, 2020

CT Construction Digest Tuesday May 19, 2020

Amazon eyes second distribution center in Windsor; looks to add 1,000 new jobs
Joe Cooper
-commerce giant Amazon, which operates a massive fulfillment center in Windsor, is planning to occupy a second major warehouse/distribution center in town where it expects to add 1,000 new jobs, town officials say.
As first reported by HBJ last month, Indiana developer Scannell Properties has proposed to build a $50-million, 823,000-square-foot distribution hub on former tobacco farmland at 1201 Kennedy Road and 1 Joseph Lane. Town officials and design professionals representing Scannell at the time did not name a potential tenant.
Amazon, though, emerged as the prospective tenant last week as the town’s Economic Development Commission voted to recommend that the Town Council consider a multi-year tax abatement sought by the company, which plans to invest at least $200 million to build out the facility.
Town records show Amazon is seeking a seven-year, 100% tax abatement that would save the company an estimated $4 million to $5 million annually upon completion of the project.
Scannell, meantime, is seeking a special use permit and site plan approval from the town's Planning and Zoning Commission. It received an inlands wetlands permit from the town in recent months.
A spokesperson for Amazon on Monday said the second potential Windsor operation would provide the company "with the flexibility to quickly respond to our future network needs." They could not, however, provide additional comment on the company's future plans in town.
According to plans, the five-story e-commerce storage and distribution facility would include 63 loading docks, 1,800 car parking spaces, 16 motorcycle spaces and 206 trailer parking stalls.
By comparison, the building’s footprint would be smaller than the existing Dollar Tree logistics center on International Drive and the Amazon fulfillment center on Old Iron Ore Road.
Amazon is hoping construction begins at the facility in the third quarter of 2020 before it starts occupying the new space in the third quarter of 2021.
If approved, Amazon would work closely with the town to employ "as many people from the community as possible once the proposed facility is operational,” according to the proposed abatement.
Burke said Amazon’s second Windsor facility would operate much differently from the company’s existing 1.2-million-square-foot fulfillment center that debuted in 2016. That $50-million facility, located off Day Hill Road near the Bloomfield line, operates as a hybrid, sortable fulfillment center handling both large and small packages. The new facility, he says, would have more robotic capabilities and house and distribute small packages.
At a recent planning and zoning commission meeting, some residents expressed concern that the proposed warehouse/distribution facility would create noise and traffic at the property flanking the intersection of Kennedy Road and Joseph Lane, meeting minutes show.
Meantime, the distribution center would also continue Scannell’s aggressive development spree in Greater Hartford.
In South Windsor, Scannell is building a 421,000-square-foot distribution facility on vacant land that will be leased long term by Home Depot upon completion. The combined 46-acre property is listed at 360 Ellington Road, 245 Chapel Road and R008 John Fitch Boulevard.
The Home Depot operation will sit across the street from another Scannell project -- a $42.4 million Coca-Cola office and distribution facility at 329-359 Ellington Road.

Monroe Tractor Names New Branch Manager and Product Support Rep of Connecticut Location
Monroe Tractor has announced Chris Reseska as branch manager and Tom Crose as a product support representative for its South Windsor, Conn., location.
Reseska brings 35 years of industry experience within several verticals including heavy equipment sales, equipment finance and global auction. With many Connecticut customer relationships already built, Reseska looks forward to introducing Monroe Tractor and its team to Connecticut's construction industry.
"It's a great feeling to come full circle having represented Case in the early 1990's . Case is a global force with best in-class equipment across all segments. In my opinion, choosing a 'brand' is only one part of the equation, the other decision that needs to be heavily considered is the people within the company that support that product, and Monroe Tractor provides just that," Reseska said.
"I consider it a privilege to have become a trusted resource and advisor to many within the Connecticut Contractor community, many of which have become my personal friends. Monroe Tractor's team is committed to earning your trust in everything we do, we understand that without 'you,' there is no 'us'."
Crose joins Monroe Tractor with more than 8 years of experience working in New England's machinery and equipment parts and service industry.
"We are excited to welcome Tom to help expand our wide range of services and OEM and aftermarket parts that we offer," said Scott Erb, director of operations. "The diverse expertise he brings in machinery is an asset to our New England customers."
Crose looks forward to meeting and assisting customers with the responsive and concise support that is required.