First building under construction at CenterPoint

Published 8:22 am Wednesday, February 2, 2011


SUFFOLK—The first building in the 930-acre CenterPoint development is under construction.

Crews are hoping to finish the new West Suffolk Baptist Church by June, said Bob Harbour, a Norfolk-based senior vice president for CenterPoint Properties.

The church is moving from its current location near Holland and Manning Bridge roads because CenterPoint wants to build a road over that piece of land as one of the main entrances into the intermodal center.

CenterPoint gave the new site on Kenyon Road, across from Paul D. Camp Community College, to the church.

“That’s a site we gave them as part of our contractual obligation to buy the existing church on Holland Road,” Harbour said.

Other work on the project is continuing, he added. A 21-acre site off Kenyon Road has been prepared with roads, water and sewer for construction to begin — but that won’t happen until the company has a tenant, he said.

“The market’s been rather quiet,” Harbour said. “We hope to see an increase of activity in 2011. We would not build a spec building in this market.”

The development includes 13 proposed buildings, parking lots and a rail yard to aid in the movement of freight by truck and train.

Phase 1 of the project will include preparing 50 to 300 acres for construction. How much acreage will be included in the first portion will depend on the market, Harbour said.

“It’s strictly market-driven,” he said. “Once we see or have an inquiry that we respond to and successfully put together a transaction, we’ll be starting.”

Harbour said Dominion Virginia Power is conducting work off Holland Road, near the project’s westernmost boundary. The company is putting a new transmission line through the far west end of the CenterPoint land.

A rezoning for the intermodal project was approved two years ago. At the time, company officials said full construction of the project was anticipated by 2015.