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AXIS Logistics Park begins marketing land, services

Sunday, May 14, 2023

What was formerly known as the SMART Terminal, a project dating back to 2019, is officially being marketed by the owners and developers as AXIS Logistics Park, even as the city of San Marcos is “processing an annexation and zoning request for land east of FM 110, between Highway 80 and the Union Pacific Railroad Tracks.'

Recently, Scarborough Lane Development announced in a press release that it is starting to market the property under the new name, abandoning any reference to SMART Terminal.

On May 2, members of the city council did vote to approach the applicant, listed in paperwork as Franklin Mountain San Marcos, I, L.P., with potential amendments to the current development agreement.

Scarborough Lane Development in a letter to the city, stated that it was declining to consider additional amendments to the agreement now under consideration. Previously, the developer had agreed to some changes after public comment. City officials stated that the Scarborough Lane letter was addressed to Amanda Hernandez, the city’s director of planning and zoning services. The letter dated May 10 was written by Scarborough Lane Development Executive Vice President-Industrial Division Clayton Kendall.

Kendall stated, “Following the Tuesday, May 2, 2023 City Council meeting, city staff was authorized to present SMART Terminal ownership an extensive list of additional major amendments to the SMART Terminal Development Agreement, recently approved by the City Council on Jan. 17, 2023. Our development team has reviewed the requested amendments and will not agree to make additional changes to the Agreement.”

He continued in the letter stating, “Scarborough is committed to the terms of our existing Agreement with the city, which include development restrictions and environmental regulations that go above and beyond standard requirements. We are proud to include these high standards in the Agreement as well as the additional changes that were voluntarily agreed to after hosting two neighborhood meetings and obtaining zoning approval on March 28, 2023. We will continue to meet or exceed these standards of excellence and will strive to be the example for other developers that come after us.”

The meetings he mentions were held as open houses in Martindale, on two Wednesdays, March 15 and March 22, in advance of the city of San Marcos Planning and Zoning meeting held March 28. These meetings were well attended by the public with specific efforts by a united group of citizens who have spoken at the most recent meeting of the city council in May expressing their documented list of concerns with respect to the development. Dr. Ana Juarez and Noah Brock spoke during that meeting’s public comment suggesting that the entire city council address agreement changes.

City staff stated Friday that they are not available to comment specifically about the Scarborough Lane letter as the item is set to be discussed with the city council in executive session on Tuesday, May 16.

The project andland under review is part of an approved Development Agreement still on the books as SMART Terminal (San Marcos Air, Rail, & Transportation), city officials stated.

Since the initial formation of the project in 2019, “questions have been received by city staff with a growing citizen response” demanding an intense look at the terms of the agreement as well as changes to the original and amended agreement based on the environmental and community needs of the acreage under consideration, a website recently updated by city officials stated.

On that website open to the public, a FAQ document details the chronology of the development, starting with an overall assessment created in February, and showing blue text changes for March, green text changes for April and red text changes for May, identifying the complexity of what is before both the city and the public.

What is now on the table is a requested amendment to the SMART Terminal and Cotton Center Development Agreements “in order to move +/-660 acres from Cotton Center to SMART Terminal.'

These amendments were previously approved by the city council in January. But the original SMART Terminal agreement covered approximately 890 acres. The 2023 amendment described by the city added the Cotton Center land as well as an additional +/-470 acres acquired by Franklin Mountain, bringing the total acreage under the SMART Terminal, and now, the AXIS Logistics Park, to approximately 2,020 acres.

Before the city now, the applicant is requesting annexation into the city limits and heavy industrial zoning for some of the land covered by the agreement. According to the city, the annexation and zoning are requirements of the agreement. Land which is covered by the agreement but not being annexed at this time is within the Cotton Center Municipal Utility District which limits the city’s ability to annex, however it does not limit the city’s ability to apply in-city development standards.

The site in March was listed as being located outside the city limits in the San Marcos Extra-territorial Jurisdiction (ETJ). The zoning request then was made up of five separate parcels, all of which are part of the SMART Terminal Development Agreement, which was originally approved in 2019 and then amended on Jan. 17 to include these additional parcels. The request is consistent with the Heavy Industrial uses in the approved Development Agreement.

In the letter declining additional changes, there was confirmation of the new marketing initiative and name change, as Kendall stated, “ Additionally, we have some exciting news to share regarding the marketing of the project. We are open for business; ownership has decided to immediately market the property. A press release marketing the property with our new name, AXIS Logistics Park, will be released by the end of the week. These are exciting times and we are thankful to have the opportunity to begin a legacy project that will impact future generations in San Marcos and the surrounding region for many years to come.”

In the press release announcing the name change and other data surrounding the proposed development, Texas-based Scarborough Lane Development and Partners Real Estate announced Thursday that the new name for the property is AXIS Logistics Park, and described it as 'a mega-industrial development,' that includes a 2,000-acre park that the co-developers offered will be 'one of the largest master planned industrial parks in the nation.'

'We are eager to continue working with the city of San Marcos and Caldwell County and market our strategically located real estate that offers logistics solutions for industrial tenants, both national and international,' Kendall said. 'AXIS Logistics Park is open for business and will be the first industrial park of its scale in Central Texas and will serve as a regional distribution hub for retailers, suppliers and manufacturers.'

The press release explains that the park is expected to be a hub for with access to distribution, manufacturing and logistics solutions for businesses interested in moving to this region. The press release reiterated that the site itself will span approximately 2,000 acres of land, and will have access to utilities and regionally connected infrastructure. The developers called this area the 'Texas Triangle,' an urban mega-region consisting of Austin, San Antonio and Houston, with direct access to Loop 110, IH-35, I-10 and SH130. Public comments during recent meetings alluded to concern for infrastrucure needs including utilities, wastewater and the possibility of noise and other environmental pollution.

'In addition to being in a strategically ideal location to serve the Texas Triangle, AXIS Logistics Park is the obvious choice for logistics and shipping by national and international manufacturers,' said John Colglazier, a partner at Partners Real Estate, one of the co-developers. Colglazier, Gray Gilbert, Chris Haro, Kyle Kennan and John Simons are listed as brokers for the AXIS Logistics Park marketing effort.

Scarborough Lane Development is a 30-yearold Addison, Texas-based full service real estate company with residential and commercial projects with a website at https:// wwwscarboroughlanedevelopment. com. Partners Real Estate is headquartered in Houston but has offices in San Antonio, Austin and Dallas. It lists a Capital Group line of business with acquisition and disposition of office, industrial and retail multitenant properties. El Paso billionaire Paul L. Foster is a name often mentioned in association with both Franklin Mountain Communities and Scarborough Lane Development in recent years. At time of press, the Daily Record was waiting comment from his company.

San Marcos Record

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P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666