Lumber Liquidators to build warehouse in Henrico

Randy Hallman | Richmond Times-Dispatch

Lumber Liquidators plans to build and operate a 1 million-square-foot distribution center in eastern Henrico County.

The Toano-based flooring retailer plans to build the center on 110 acres of undeveloped land it has agreed to buy in the White Oak Technology Park about 6 miles east of Richmond International Airport.

The $46 million project, which includes about $5 million for the land, is expected to be finished in the third quarter of 2014.

The company did not say how many employees would work at the Henrico center, though Lumber Liquidators said in a statement that it will be creating jobs locally.

“We’re excited about the jobs and tax revenue that will be brought to the county,” said Gary R. McLaren, executive director of the Henrico Economic Development Authority. “We have some momentum going for White Oak Technology Park. … The roads built for this project will help attract other businesses.”

Lumber Liquidators currently leases about 750,000 square feet of distribution space at four sites in Hampton.

The leases on those spaces expire next year, the company said, and operations at those sites will be consolidated into the Henrico facility. The company didn’t say how many employees might be transferred from the four centers in Hampton to Henrico.
The new warehouse — about the size of the Amazon.com fulfillment center in Chesterfield County — is part of Lumber Liquidators’ national distribution initiative.
As part of that plan, the company also said Wednesday that it will lease a 500,000-square-foot distribution center in Pomona, Calif., and will have that facility operating by November. That center will serve the company’s growing store base on the West Coast.

Lumber Liquidators has more than 300 stores in 46 states and Canada and has nearly 1,500 employees overall. Two of the company’s stores are in the Richmond area at 9990 Robious Rd. and 8818-B W. Broad St.

White Oak Technology Park, about 2,300 acres in all, is east of Interstate 295 and south of U.S. 60.

The net proceeds from the sale of the land will go to the state, which previously owned the property. The land sale should close within a month, McLaren said.

Henrico collects tax revenue from companies that locate there.

McLaren said the Henrico Economic Development Authority had been working with Lumber Liquidators for months on the deal.

The property doesn’t need to be rezoned. “The plan of development is making its way through the process,” he said.

Other tenants at the park include Quality Technology Services’ data center in the former 1.3 million-square-foot Qimonda semiconductor plant; a Bank of America processing center; and a Hewlett-Packard plant.

Robert M. Lynch, Lumber Liquidators’ president and CEO, said in a statement that consolidating distribution operations in Henrico and leasing the California facility “will ensure we can support the tremendous growth of our business and improve service to our expanding customer base.”

He said improved efficiency will allow the company to “increase our labor productivity and lower our transportation costs.”

The investments in the company’s supply chain “will provide the foundation for our long-term growth — to continue to expand our footprint and capture additional market share,” he said.

The company said it expects to pay for the Henrico project and improvements to the California facility using existing cash and operating cash flow.

Lumber Liquidators was founded about 20 years ago in West Roxbury, Mass. It relocated its headquarters to Colonial Heights in 1999, but outgrew that location and moved to its current plant near Williamsburg in 2004.

 

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