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Ground work starting in bid to lure 600 jobs
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Expect to see a flurry of construction activity within 30 days to mark the start of a $175 million investment that may ultimately yield upwards of 600 permanent jobs in Manteca.

The 190-acre CenterPoint Intermodal Facility - Manteca’s biggest business park yet -is getting ready to break ground west of Airport Way between Roth Road and Lathrop Road in the northwest portion of the city.

The developer has already moved large drain pipe to the site that is needed to relocate a South San Joaquin Irrigation District ditch so that work can start as soon as the weather allows.

Manteca Economic Development Specialist Don Smail earlier this month told the City Council that there will be a lot of work over several months to prepare the site for building.

“Then you’re going to see it get still for awhile,” Smail said.

That’s because since the drainage improvements as well as sewer and water lines will have been put in place, CenterPoint will be ready to “seriously” shop the business park to prospective firms. There has already been strong interest in CenterPoint. Firms, however, do not commit until such time a site is ready for development which requires infrastructure to be in place.

The 3.1-million-square-foot facility is designed specifically to snag tenants that rely heavily on proximity to railroad intermodal complexes that take load truck trailers and containers to and from trains.

The Illinois concern that was acquired and privatized in 2006 by the California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) has all city approvals needed.

CalPERS plans to invest $175 million into the project located directly across the tracks from the Union Pacific intermodal yards. Some 3.1 million square feet of logistics/distribution space will be built. There are four structures planned ranging from 132,778 square feet to 1,491,718 square feet. The biggest distribution center in Manteca today is Ford Motor Small parts at 550,000 square feet in Spreckels Park.

The project will generate upwards of 1,400 jobs. Of those 800 are construction jobs and 600 would be permanent jobs.

What is making the Manteca project appealing to potential users is its location adjacent to the UP facility preparing to expand from 220,000 lifts to 700,000 lifts a year. A lift refers to the loading or unloading of a truck trailer for the rail-to-truck - and vice versa operations.

Users are expected to have large logistics and distributor needs that require tearing down products and either repackaging or reassembling and then prepare them for distribution. The project will have direct access to the UP yard to significantly reduce the potential impact for truck traffic.