On October 21, Fort Myers, Fla.-based Seagate Development Group announced that it would develop, design, and build a pre-engineered metal building with 54,000 sf of warehouse space and 6,000 sf of offices for ABC Supply, the largest distributor of building materials in the U.S. That building, which is scheduled to break ground in the first quarter of next year, will be located on six acres in Charlotte County Park of Commerce, adjacent to Punta Gorda Airport in Florida. It should be completed by the fourth quarter of 2022.
The ABC Supply building is one of several projects that Seagate’s Commercial division had either started or completed over the past few months alone, all in Florida, most in and around Fort Myers.
These include the completion of the $60 million global headquarters on 14 acres for NeoGenomics Laboratories that splits its 150,000 sf evenly between offices and genetic diagnostic labs. Seagate also started construction on a 32,000-sf warehouse and 3,000-sf office space for Rice Insulation & Glass at Alico Trade Center, a Class-A business park that Seagate owns; and began vertical construction on a 32,900-sf warehouse for White Cap Construction Supply after completing the shell for White Cap’s 18,000-sf steel fabrication building. (PDS Architecture is the architect on the White Cap project.)
To date, Seagate’s Commercial division has developed more than $700 million in commercial real estate in Southwest Florida. And what distinguishes most of its construction and renovation projects is that they are design-build. Seagate presents itself as “more of a one-stop shop for our clients,” says Matt Price, Seagate’s 40-year-old CEO and Partner, who cofounded the company in 2014 with his father William Price and James Nulf, the developer’s President.
DESIGN-BUILD GIVES SEAGATE MORE COST CONTROL
Price elaborates that one of Seagate’s competitive assets is “we’re a single point of contact for clients.” Where most design-build teams are typically hired by contractors, Seagate assembles its teams from a developer’s perspective, and its approach is rigorously cost conscious.
During an interview earlier with month with BD+C, Price noted that the budget for the NeoGenomics headquarters project was $59,941,001, and that the building team—which included the architecture and interior design firm Studio+, the GC DeAngelis Diamond, and CE Hole Montes—didn’t deviate from that number. If there are any underages, Seagate prefers to provide its clients with extras rather than redistribute them with its building partners
(In 2018, Seagate launched Theory Design to handle the interiors of all its projects. It also has a remodeling division, and manages over 1.5 million sf of commercial space.)
OPEN TO TRYING AN IPD CONTRACT
There are several AEC firms that Seagate favors, such as the CE Quattrone & Associates, which has worked on a number of its recent projects. But Price compares Seagate to Switzerland: “We’ll work with anyone. But we target partners based on project and availability.” He adds that Seagate’s Rolodex of building partners “is bigger than some might think.”
While Seagate hasn’t done a project yet under an Integrated Project Delivery contract, Price says it might be open to that in the future. “We’re small enough so we can make decisions like that quickly.”
Right now, Seagate is content focusing its commercial division’s efforts on Florida, where Price sees 20 years of growth potential. New construction will be Seagate’s primary activity, and in mid-October Seagate was in discussions on projects that would be 75,000, 100,000, and 150,000 sf, all along the Alico corridor that leads to the airport. But with developable land at a premium in Florida, “there should be lots of redevelopment opportunities, too,” he says.
Price also didn’t dismiss the possibility for growth through acquisitions. “Maybe we can talk again in six months about that.”