New types of tenant requirements are reshaping demand and warehouse space design
New types of tenant requirements are reshaping demand and warehouse space design. In what has become a one billion square foot industrial market with over 75 million square feet of new construction underway in Dallas/Fort Worth, our region continues as the nation's market leader in new warehouse construction. Developers from all over the US and a few outside the US have projects under construction in DFW. Building depths, bay spacing, clear heights, truck court depths, car and truck parking have all been impacted by increased warehouse demand due to e-commerce and exacerbated by the pandemic.
The advantages of DFW's central location, transportation network, high quality of life, international airport, relatively low cost of living and business-friendly policies have contributed to Dallas's reputation as an industrial hub. Dallas is now a showcase for building innovation and design, with buildings ranging from 125,000 square feet up to over one million square feet.
The theme of sustainability is a topic that has become front and center with occupiers and industrial investors. They are increasingly aware that now is the time to start sustainable initiatives if they are looking for results by 2030. Wildfires in the Western US, floods in Kentucky, heat waves in Texas and the East Coast are all evidence of global warming and a reminder that the sustainability of our planet is a real emergency.
In Dallas, USAA Real Estate and its development partner, Seefried Industrial Properties, are near completion of a 160,475-square-foot warehouse in South Dallas that will be among the first ever to use sustainable building materials. The materials used will reduce the carbon impact of its construction by more than 45%, or the equivalent of a single car's emissions over more than two million miles of travel.
The warehouse in Southfield Park 35, located just south of I-20 near Danieldale and Old Hickory Road in southern Dallas County, has been constructed with Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT), a precision-designed wood product that replaces the concrete tilt-wall panels of a typical industrial warehouse.
Conventional construction methods are predicated on using concrete, which produces 8% of global carbon emissions annually. By relying on this wood product rather than steel and concrete, the carbon-intensive construction process is mitigated almost by half. Each CLT panel is constructed to 132nd of an inch within specifications.
The 60-foot CLT panels of the warehouse originate from a vast forest in British Columbia, Canada that is closely regulated by federal authorities, who allow only 1% of available timber to be cultivated and mandate that two trees be planted for each one that is harvested.
The CLT materials, which remain exposed on the warehouse's interior, are supplemented with MEGASLAB concrete systems, a proprietary admixture for the building's slab and site paving that relies upon reduced cement but maintains remarkable durability and strength.
The point here is that sustainability is on more corporate wish lists, and we expect to see it included in the future as a top criterion for selecting suppliers and logistics providers. To gain or retain business, logistics providers such as truckers and warehousers will have to have sustainability programs in place and/or strategic plans for a reduction in carbon emissions.