Two Major Economic Development Projects Select ILM Business Park; Furthering Economic Investment and Growth

At a press event this morning, The Wilmington International Airport announced that two companies, CIL Capital, LLC and Edgewater Ventures, have each selected the ILM Business Park as the location of their strategic business investment and development. The ILM Business Park, which encompasses 140 acres on airport property, has foreign trade zone status, access to Customs, close proximity to major highways, rail, Port, and an airfield, and is minutes to downtown Wilmington.

“Each of these projects has involved months of hard work from all parties involved, including the  Airport Authority and staff, New Hanover County, Wilmington Business Development and representatives from each company, and I want to express my sincere appreciation for the steadfast dedication and cooperation that was employed to bring these projects to fruition.  We are so proud CIL Capital and Edgewater Ventures have chosen to invest in the ILM Business Park,” stated Donna Girardot, Chairman of the New Hanover County Airport Authority.  “The Wilmington International Airport has a $2.2 Billion economic impact on our region, supports 16,385 jobs, and generates $85 million in tax revenue.  Our ILM Business Park, and the addition of CIL Capital and Edgewater Ventures, will bring significant investment, diverse and higher wage jobs, and further our airport as an economic engine in the region. We are committed to ongoing partnerships that support our community’s growth and prosperity, now and in the future,” Girardot shared.

CIL Capital, LLC, has signed a long-term ground lease at the ILM Business Park for the development of a 500,000 square foot storage and distribution facility for the Life Sciences Industry.

“Wilmington International Airport is a best-in-class operator who shares the same belief as CIL Capital, that Wilmington, NC is America’s best kept secret,” said Michael Hockett, Founder and CEO of CIL Capital. “Phase I will be a $100 Million Dollar investment to build a state-of-the-art facility delivering a much-needed supply chain gap for the life sciences industry. The large metro areas around the country have experienced significant supply chain constraints at their ports and airports. North Carolina has made tremendous investments here at the local Port and their International Airport which gives Wilmington a tremendous competitive advantage to the rest of the country struggling with capacity.” 

Together with the airport, CIL Capital’s development will transform the existing landscape of distribution having a facility directly on airport ground with US Customs clearance onsite and the Port of Wilmington within a 15 minutes’ drive. 

In addition, Edgewater Ventures has signed a long-term ground lease of approximately 30 acres at the ILM Business Park with plans to develop a three-building Class A speculative industrial development that will total over 540,000 square feet.  The current site layout will accommodate two (2) rear-loaded, multi-tenant facilities totaling 213,000 square feet, and a 330,000 square foot cross-dock facility that will feature 180’ deep truck courts with dedicated trailer storage.  All three facilities will boast state-of-the-art tilt-up concrete construction featuring expansive glass lines, 32’ – 36’ clear heights, ESFR sprinkler systems throughout, and extensive employee parking on-site. 

“Given the high-profile location of the buildings at the Wilmington International Airport, our plan is to design the facilities to be state-of-the-art in both form and function,” stated Chris Norvell, lead industrial development partner with Edgewater Ventures.  “The location demands that these facilities be constructed to stand the test of time, and we want the buildings to be on par with the highest-end industrial facilities in the nation, such that the entire community can be proud of them.”

Edgewater’s development at ILM Business Park will be the first ever speculative Class A industrial development located in close proximity to the Wilmington International Airport.  In addition to the outstanding proximity to the Airport, the development will feature an incredible last-mile, infill location with superior access throughout the Wilmington market and the region.  “There’s not a better location in the market,” said Norvell.  “Airport proximate industrial facilities are typically the best performing industrial assets in larger markets.  What makes this opportunity unique is that its also the top infill location in the Wilmington region with incredible accessibility via Martin Luther King Parkway.”

The Wilmington International Airport development is Edgewater Ventures’ second ground-up industrial development in the Wilmington market and will add to the company’s industrial portfolio in the area which currently totals nearly 1,300,000 square feet.  “We’re bullish about the long-term growth of the region and view the ILM Business Park development as extremely well positioned to serve companies looking for a best-in-class facility in an unbeatable location,” said Norvell.

Both developments will enrich New Hanover County and the Cape Fear Region as a whole.  “These two projects will bring a total of $120 million in investments to our county and will grow our tax base, increase jobs, and enhance economic development opportunities for our region,” said Board of Commissioners Chair Julia Olson-Boseman. “CIL Capital and Edgewater Ventures chose New Hanover County and our ILM Business Park because of the possibilities it provides. Access to the airport, proximity to the Port of Wilmington, strong and expanding infrastructure, supportive partnerships, and a community committed to smart growth all make this a prime location. This is an exciting day, and I look forward to the progress these projects will bring.”

Scott Satterfield, CEO of Wilmington Business Development (WBD) and a key partner in helping recruit these businesses to New Hanover County, echoed Board of Commissioners Chair Julia Olson-Boseman’s sentiment. “This is a pivotal day for the Greater Wilmington economy,” said Scott Satterfield, CEO of Wilmington Business Development. “As global supply-chains adjust to the post-pandemic world, multi-modal transportation assets are in greater demand than ever. This is especially true for life sciences operations, an area in which our region has long excelled. The visionary work of creating and marketing ILM Business Park fits perfectly with the wave of new high-quality business product taking place across our region, and WBD is proud to partner with ILM and New Hanover County in embracing this game-changing opportunity.” 

Media Contact:                                                                                                
Donna Girardot
New Hanover County Airport Authority Chairman
[email protected]  

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About the Wilmington International Airport: The Wilmington International Airport serves southeastern North Carolina with commercial air service on American Airlines, Delta, and United.  The Wilmington International Airport is the fifth largest airport in North Carolina. The NCDOT Division of Aviation’s 2020 report estimated ILM’s economic impact at $2.25 billion and 16,385 jobs.  The ILM Business Park, located on the airport campus, encompasses 140 acres and numerous parcels that have access to customs as well as close proximity to major highways, rail, port, and an airfield. It’s also minutes to downtown Wilmington.  The Business Park has Foreign Trade Zone status, utilities in place, flexible site layouts, and competitive lease rates. For more information on ILM, please visit flyILM.com

About CIL Capital, LLC: CIL Capital LLC was founded by the family office of D. Michael (“Mike”) Hockett. CIL is focused primarily on acquiring, developing, and maximizing values of real estate investments integrated with logistics businesses. As of September 30, 2021, Mike has developed over 10 million square feet of commercial properties in North America. 

About Edgewater Ventures: Edgewater Ventures is a commercial real estate investment firm that is focused on the acquisition and development of industrial, office, multi-family, and mixed-use assets across the Carolinas. Our team members have dedicated their entire careers to the maximization of real estate value through the identification of opportunities and the first-class operation of assets for our clients and partners. With over 50 years of combined experience and years of working together, the Edgewater team brings a unique corporate culture and passion for the industry that has consistently translated into exceptional results.  Founded in January of 2020, Edgewater currently owns and operates a portfolio of 2.5 million square feet of properties throughout the Carolinas, and has approximately 2.3 million square feet of industrial facilities in various stages of development in the Charlotte, Raleigh, and Wilmington markets.  Edgewater has offices in both Raleigh and Wilmington, North Carolina.

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