FERNLEY, Nev. — The owners of the Tahoe Reno Industrial Center are in the process of buying up to 20,000 acres of land in Lyon County to create a new industrial park.
“We've pretty well wrapped up (TRIC),” said Lance Gilman, who owns the existing center east of Reno in Storey County, along with Roger Norman. “We legitimately have about 300-400 acres left.”
Gilman added in a recent interview with the Nevada Appeal that some of that property is in escrow at this time, so, “we're embarking on our next project.”
“We've been looking for a special opportunity and we've identified one,” he said.
That opportunity consists of upward of 20,000 acres of undeveloped land along both sides of U.S. 95A directly west of TRIC, stretching south from the Fernley town limits.
That area, he said, is in what he and Norman see as “the path of growth” in western Nevada.
“There is still a very strong demand for manufacturing, distribution and especially fulfillment centers,” Gilman said, adding that much of that demand is for parcels a lot larger than anything left at TRIC.
What's planned for the site?
Specific details on what's planned for the property remain unknown.
According to an Aug. 21 report from the Reno Gazette Journal, Gilman first announced plans for the park on Aug. 9. That announcement apparently caught Fernley city officials off guard.
“The city has not received any official requests for a specific project out there," City Manager Daphne Hooper told the RGJ. “Out in that area, everything is checkerboarded. So, if you're looking at 5,000 acres, ultimately it had to be pieced together. So, without knowing specifics I can tell you I'm sure federal property is included in that. Which is a process.
"You don't just go into escrow. … There's a lot of things that go into federal conveyance of land … things that take a long time through the federal government. You don't just purchase a piece of property.”
In the same RGJ story, Fernley Mayor Roy Edgington said he spoke with Gilman and Congressman Mark Amodei several times about the project over the past several months, but he was also caught off guard by the Aug. 9 announcement.
The Crossroads industrial center will be rebranded as Victory Logistics District and will be developed in several phases.
A need for housing
Gilman has talked recently about the need for residential development in that area to feed the growing needs of the workforce at TRIC and, now, their new plan.
“Both sides of the highway are developable. There's lots of infrastructure with the highway accessing what we need," he said. “The really interesting news there is a lot of property we're looking at shares a boundary line with (TRIC).
"It's conceivable we would be able to tie the two projects together with infrastructure. That's not out of the question at all.”
Gilman said it's a lot of work and a challenging project, but he emphasized that it's moving forward.
“We're now in escrow and will close absolutely on the first 7,000 acres,” he said. “This gives us a footprint and something to work for in the short term.”
TRIC was a ranch with a single owner when they bought it a couple of decades ago.
“Candidly, this is an assemblage,” Gilman said about the new property.
That means they are negotiating with multiple owners.
“If we can bring all this together, really, it's going to represent a milestone step ahead of where we are,” he said. “It's real preliminary right now, just out of the starting gate.”
NNBV Editor Kevin MacMillan contributed to this report.