Blackstone Proposes $700M Industrial Complex Near Miami

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Miami-Dade County could soon welcome a gargantuan $700 million industrial complex, thanks to Blackstone.

Link Logistics, an industrial developer that Blackstone founded in 2019, is seeking to build 12 warehouses totaling 2.3 million square feet in Miami Gardens. The development is estimated to cost $700 million. 

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The industrial project would be built over the racetrack of the Calder Casino, located at 21001 N.W. 27th Avenue. Link Logistics is buying the 116-acre parcel for $291 million from the casino and racetrack operator, Churchill Downs, which announced the deal last year. The sale is expected to close within the next three months. 

Calder Casino remains open, but the surrounding racetrack has been closed since 2020. 

While Link Logistics’ plans now are to create an industrial complex, the property could also hold a medical research center and studios for radio, music, television and movie production. Link Logistics is seeking special exemptions to house these types of properties. 

Churchill Downs filed the proposal on Link Logistics’ behalf, divulging the firm’s plans for the massive plot. Miami Gardens’ city council will hear the proposal this Wednesday. 

If approved, Link Logistics would break ground late this year or in 2023, completing the development in 2025. 

A representative for Link Logistics declined to comment, while a spokesperson for Churchill Downs did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

Industrial real estate has become one of the hottest asset classes to come out of the pandemic as consumers turned to e-commerce during lockdown and then stuck with it. Vacancies have dropped by almost two percentage points to 2.8 percent over the past year, as of March, across Miami-Dade County, according to data from Colliers. At the same time, average asking rents rose by $1.26 to $11.21 a foot, triple net.  

Link Logistics’ project mirrors the property next door. The EastGroup bought 60 acres, also from Churchill Downs, for $26.5 million in 2016, developing a warehouse and distribution center that’s now complete. 

Churchill Downs is looking to offload much of the remaining land. Once the sale to Link Logistics closes, Churchill Downs will still own 54.7 acres, of which it only plans to retain 17 acres along 27th Avenue for a future development. 

Julia Echikson can be reached at jechikson@commercialobserver.com