In 2010, Duckworth Realty was shortlisted by this global leader in agriculture to develop a state-of-the-art seed research facility. Within 72 hours our development team, including our General Contractor, Electrical Engineer and Mechanical Engineer were at the company’s headquarters where we spent a day with their facility engineers and project managers finalizing a design which saved the company over $500,000. A development and lease agreement was executed within 45 days and construction commenced immediately thereafter on their 26,100 SF seed-research facility in Flora, MS. Construction was completed ahead of schedule and on-budget.
In 2006, Duckworth Realty acquired a recently-vacated 25,000 SF former skating rink facility located in the heart of the fast-growing medical corridor of Lakeland Drive. The building, while functionally obsolete, was well-located and structurally in great condition, with the added benefit of a column-less interior design allowing maximum office design efficiencies. In partnership with Barranco Architects, Layfair Place professional office building was designed, which included removing the entire front façade, filling in the former skating rink, constructing all new plumbing, electrical and HVAC, reconfiguring the parking lot, and upgrading the landscaping. Construction began on a speculative basis given the strength of the submarket, and prior to completion of the shell redevelopment we signed our first lease with Coram Healthcare. Within six months thereafter, we leased the remainder of the building to Denbury Resources on a long-term lease. As an added benefit, we were able to utilize Gulf Opportunity Zone accelerated depreciation (legislation put into place following Hurricane Katrina) which allowed us to depreciate 50% of the cost of the project in the first year of operation.
In the mid 90’s, an affiliate of Duckworth Realty completed the acquisition of the one million square foot portfolio AmSouth Bank Office Towers in Shreveport, Louisiana and Jackson, Mississippi. The total acquisition exceeded $70 million.
In 2007, Duckworth Realty was hired to develop a strategic growth plan for an independent grocery retailer based in Mississippi. At the time, the retailer was not in expansion mode but poised to capitalize on a down market. Over the past seven years, Duckworth Realty had helped the retailer add 9 stores to its portfolio and expand into the state of Alabama.
In late 2009, Duckworth was hired to reposition this 22 story, 335,000 square foot office building located in the Jackson CBD. The property had just been dealt a severe blow with one of the major tenants downsizing and two relocating which would reduce the building’s occupancy to 42%. Duckworth Realty developed and executed on a hands on marketing plan which would ultimately reposition the asset. Part of this plan involved pioneering a strategy to consolidate state government offices within the CBD. The intense efforts resulted in 80,000 square foot of new leases over a period of 24 months. During this period, the CBD experienced several consecutive quarters of negative or flat absorption and led all other submarkets with the highest vacancy rate.