(This spotlight on major commercial developers is comprised of companies and their leadership that have undertaken major projects in the North Bay. They are listed first by county and then alphabetically by company.)
Click here for photo gallerySONOMA COUNTYLarry Wasem, Managing General Partner, Airport Business Center
414 Aviation Blvd., Santa Rosa 95403; 707-578-5344; www.airportbusinesscenter.com
North Bay project: Airport Business Center phase 7, Windsor -- the latest expansion to the 463-acre business park has 17 acres of industrial land.
Located near Charles M. Schulz--Sonoma County Airport north of Santa Rosa, Airport Business Center is the North Bay's largest business park. Larry Wasem and Richard Coombs started the park, and the other holdings include the 50 Old Courthouse Square office building and two movie theaters in downtown Santa Rosa as well as golf courses in Windsor and Petaluma.
Airport Business Center has about 30 acres left to develop, 9.5 of which are in a 17-acre new phase of the development. Occupants of the new phase already are DuMol and Marcassin wineries and retailer Tractor Supply Co.
There are several large and small prospects for the remaining land, but deals are even slower to consummate than before, according to Mr. Wasem.
"In general, we were disappointed to see the economy slow again toward the end of the second quarter," he said. "However, we still feel very good about our ability to deliver product. We have great lending relationships."Matt White, President and CEO, Basin Street Properties
1383 N. McDowell Blvd., Ste. 200, Petaluma 94954; 707-795-4477; www.basin-street.com
North Bay projects: Approvals to build 300,000 square feet of office buildings at Fountaingrove Executive Center in northeast Santa Rosa, Harvest Business Center by Charles M. Schulz--Sonoma County Airport, Redwood Business Center in northeast Petaluma and Petaluma Marina Office Center in southeast Petaluma. Renovations are under way in seven Petaluma office buildings, totaling re-acquired in 2011.
Matt White joined Basin Street in 1994, when it was called G&W Management and he was involved in industrial development. He then moved to chief financial officer and finally to the top executive spot a decade ago. Basin Street Properties has been a major North Bay commercial property developer since it became the driving force for Redwood Business Park in the 1970s, when the company was called G&W Management.
As the tech-led recession of 2001 led to higher vacancies in local tech companies, Basin Street sold 1.45 million square feet of office space in Sonoma and Marin counties in 2005 and relocated its headquarters to Reno, Nev., in 2009 as the company focused on hospitality, multifamily, retail and mixed-use projects elsewhere in Northern California and in the Reno area.
"The last 10 years have been very difficult, and there has been a 10-year telecom hangover," he said. "I feel like we've finally worked through that. We've finally come back to a healthy place."
In the first half of this year, Basin Street re-acquired seven Petaluma buildings for $21 million from lenders and is spending millions more upgrading them for new tenants, namely the 96,000-square-foot of Enphase Energy later this year.
"The greatest thing in Sonoma County right now is the growth is not all in one industry," Mr. White said. "It's in telecom and solar and agriculture and medical devices and Athleta-type businesses. That's really good for the long-term viability of the market."