Commercial space pops up in Elko |

Commercial space pops up in Elko

Rob Sabo

The City of Elko is poised to get some much-needed commercial industrial space.

Robert Capps, president of Capps Group Inc. broke ground two weeks ago on Silver Street Business Center, a 25-acre property at Silver and 14th streets. And Frank Gallagher head of Commercial Partners of Nevada, expects to receive a certificate of occupancy by months end for the first building at South Fork Commerce Center at 12th Street and Clarkson Drive.

Both properties will help ease a years-long shortage of industrial space in Elko. Jim Winer, broker/owner of Coldwell Banker Algerio/Q-Team Realty, says industrial vacancy in Elko is practically zero — and it’s even harder to find property that has warehouse and yard space. Many of the available buildings in Elko have filled in the past few years with companies that service the robust mining sector in Elko and surrounding counties.

“We do have pretty extreme shortage of light industrial and commercial property available here in our community,” Winer says.

Silver Street Business Center also will be the new home of the City of Elko police station. The city has purchased three acres at the site for its $6.3 million project. Mass grading is underway at the site, and the developer plans to fully improve the land with utilities, curbing, sidewalks, gutters and paving. Capps Group plans to sell improved parcels outright or do build-to-suits for prospective tenants, says Winer, who is handling leasing and sales negotiations for Capps Group.

Capps has a long history with Elko — he began taking heli-skiing trips in the nearby Ruby Mountain more than 20 years ago. The Truckee resident says he’s always looking to identify viable real estate projects and also plans to develop Great Basin Estates, a proposed 64-lot subdivision of single-family homes. Both developments are privately financed with no equity partners.

“I’ve been working on this for a few years,” Capps says. “The Elko County economy is a very strong micro-economy; the unemployment rate is less that half the state as a whole. The City of Elko has lost out on a handful of companies that wanted to be based in Elko because it didn’t have any light industrial property ready to go.”

Gallagher, who partnered on South Fork Commerce Center with Don Wilkerson of Gaston & Wilkerson Management Group of Reno, has a few lease proposals on the table for phase 1 of the proposed five-building development totaling 47,000 square feet. The first building is 12,179 square feet with 16-foot clear heights and can accommodate up to five tenants if spaces are subdivided to 2,434 square feet.

The addition of new industrial and warehousing space in city limits is a huge boost to business recruitment efforts, says Pam Borda, executive director of the Northeastern Nevada Regional Development Authority.

Borda has been handcuffed by lack of space to locate new businesses in town — she’s even working with a firm that’s temporarily doing business in Elko from a location in Utah because it couldn’t find suitable space in town.

“This is huge,” Borda says. “I have several companies I am working with trying to find space. We just don’t have any industrial land in the city boundaries, but we still have got all kind of companies coming to town because of mining. We have nothing vacant for those people, so having these other solutions is just huge.”

Winer says a major benefit of Silver Street Business Center is that it’s centrally located off Idaho and Silver streets, and it also abuts the Union Pacific rail lines — though a spur has not been established. Density of the business park will be determined by market demand, he adds. Capps Group may develop a building shell on a spec basis to kick-start the project.