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Field of biotech dreams


By Thomas Lee - Star Tribune
November 18, 2007

A developer envisions a bioscience park on an elk farm along Hwy. 52 near Pine Island. All it needs now are state backing and tenants.
 
Can an elk farm ignite a biotech boom in southern Minnesota?
 
Tower Investments, a California-based real estate investment firm, is planning an ambitious 1.7 million-square-foot biotech research and manufacturing facility on an elk farm off Hwy. 52 near Pine Island, about 15 minutes north of Rochester. Construction of the bioscience park, the first of its kind in Minnesota, is scheduled to begin in mid-2008.
 
Tower executives and state and local officials say such a facility, part of a massive multiuse development called Elk Run, could help establish a biotech corridor along Hwy. 52, which connects the Mayo Clinic, the University of Minnesota Rochester, and IBM Life Sciences research and development labs with the U's Twin Cities campus and the major medical companies in the metro area.

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Tower turns old factories into distribution centers for profit

By Jim Stinson - Nashville Business Journal
November 16, 2007

Tower Investments LLC is targeting what it sees as a growing market - abandoned or aging factories ripe to be converter to distribution centers.
 
The investment and development firm, based in Woodland, Calif., with an office in Nashville, owns more than 9 million square feet of industrial property throughout the United States.
 
The dc-dc converter manufacturer properties are mainly in secondary and tertiary markets and generally range from 300,000 to 1 million square feet.
 
Tower officials say there is a national shift from manufacturing to distribution operations and identified a new use for older 12v to 48v converter facilities in the current market.
 
"With the shift toward overseas manufacturing, large-scale industrial facilities are no longer in great demand in the United States, and many have gone into disrepair," says Matt Marks, a senior vice president with Tower. "At the same time, there is a rising need for warehouse and distribution space for smaller businesses that do not have the resources to build out their own facilities."

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Williamson County Impact Awards-Development: Alex Marks

By Jim Stinson - Nashville Business Journal
November 9, 2007

Williamson County Impact Awards - Development
 
Alex Marks
 
Alex Marks believes so much in Williamson County, he moved there even though his company headquarters stayed in California.
 
Marks is senior vice president of Tower Investments, LLC, based in Woodland, CA.
 
Marks, a Franklin resident, has helped his family business leave a noticeable mark on Williamson County by developing three equestrian communities in Leipers Fork, a total of 75 homes on 1,021 acres.
 
Since moving to Williamson County in 2006 from Woodland, Marks says the quality of life and the friends he made inspired him to establish his home in Franklin.
 
"It's about friendship versus social status," says Marks, a graduate of the University of Southern California.

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Starting from scrap

By Katie Porterfield - Business TN Magazine
November 1, 2007

A metals processing site with a complicated ownership structure and a California family bullish on Middle Tennessee are just two players in a riverfront development puzzle

Talk to anyone involved in Nashville city planning efforts about the city's future, and chances are they'll mention redeveloping the downtown Cumberland Riverfront. Former mayor Bill Purcell allocated $8 million in the 2007-2008 fiscal year budget for Metro to begin a $40 million, five-year project that will create 120 acres of parkland and about 20 public riverfront features along both sides of the river between the Woodland Street Bridge and the Korean War Veterans Memorial Bridge. A longer term, 15- to 20-year plan includes the bolder prospect of carving a channel along the interstate loop in the Cumberland's East bank to create an island encompassing LP Field.
 
It's a project that generates a great deal of excitement for the city, and with it comes that oft-discussed matter of the PSC Metals site-a metal recycling facility on the East bank of the Cumberland that's a coveted piece in the riverfront development puzzle.
 
"Many people agree that's not the highest and best use of that property, and as we build out the public and recreational features downtown [in phase one of the project], we'll be building right up to the metals site," says Chris Koster, the city's special project manager for the riverfront redevelopment project. "That transformation will increase opportunities available on that site."

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Company buys SuperValu warehouse in Milton

By Herald-Dispatch, Huntington, WV
October 12, 2007

MILTON -- Tower Investments, a multi-state real estate investment and development company, has purchased a nearly 250,000-square-foot industrial facility at 386 James River Turnpike. SuperValu will remain in the building, which it will now lease from Tower Investments.
 
The facility was built about 30 years ago by American Real Estate Holding Co. and was leased as a dry goods and cold storage distribution facility to SuperValu, a grocery retail chain headquartered in Minneapolis.
 
"Our purchase was centered on a quality building, with a great tenant in a strategic location," Seth Curran, a project manager with Tower Investments, said in a press release. "Tower welcomes the opportunity to help Milton capitalize on its location and workforce to continue to strengthen the area's economy."

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Developer floats 'lifestyle center' plan

By Kimberly Jahnke - Fortville-McCordsville Reporter
September 13, 2007

Another major commercial developer has its eyes set on McCordsville.
 
The Tow Council heard an informal rezoning proposal Tuesday, September 11, for McCord Square, a 90-acre "lifestyle center" located near the intersection of CR 600 West and Broadway Street.
 
Commercial realty executive Kurt Mathewson, representing developer Tower Investments of California, said that project will create a pedestrian-friendly complex similar to Carmel's Clay terrace Mall. It will include a mix of retail, restaurants and commercial office uses.
 
The development "will help update the town," Mathewson said, "while still maintaining the qualities that people who live in McCordsville would like to maintain."

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Restaurateur to build new rooftop venue

By Linda Bryant - Nashville Business Journal
September 2, 2007

Restaurateur and club owner Benjamin Goldberg will open Aerial, a glass-covered meeting and events venue, on the roof of his Paradise Park Trailer Resort honky tonk diner on Lower Broadway in late September.
 
Unlike the cheeky redneck themes of Paradise Park - with its trailer park theme - the 2,000-square-foot Aerial is designed to have a sophisticated appeal.
 
"Our idea is to have a high-end, private events space," Goldberg says.
 
The success of Paradise Park, which launched in March, helped make Aerial happen sooner than expected. The 24-hour bar and diner outperformed revenue expectations by 25 percent and will exceed $2 million in revenue in 2007, Goldberg says.
 
The Aerial space on top of 411 Broadway in the old Heilig-Myers Furniture store overlooks symbols of Nashville past and present - the honky tonks of Lower Broadway such as Tootsie's Orchid Lounge, the Ryman Auditorium, the Sommet Center and the new Schermerhorn Symphony Center.

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Marks family brings horsepower to Williamson's Leipers Fork

By Linda Bryant - Nashville Business Journal
July 20, 2007

A ranching family with deep roots in the cattle country of Central California is becoming influential in Middle Tennessee.
 
Not only is the Marks family a major player in the high-density, rapid-growth Monopoly board of downtown Nashville development, it's wielding an impact in the idyllic community of Leipers Fork in Williamson County.
 
The Marks, via their development company Tower Investments, are building three sprawling equestrian-themed subdivisions in the rustic unincorporated area - a spot beloved by residents, preservationists, horse lovers, artists, farmers and old-timers.
 
Leipers Fork residents are known for being fiercely protective of the natural beauty of the area and area Realtor Ray Helmsworth says the family is getting a warm reception.
 
"They are really passionate about maintaining the natural beauty of the area," Helmsworth says.

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Tower Investments To Open SoBro Office

By Press Release
July 10, 2007

Leaders in downtown redevelopment cement local presence
 
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Tower Investments, LLC, the multi-state real estate investment and development company with significant holdings and projects in Nashville's urban core and surrounding counties, is cementing its local presence by opening an office at 411 Broadway in downtown.  This marks the first office that Tower has opened outside of its headquarters in Northern California.
 
"Physically opening an office here signifies our long-term commitment to this region," senior vice president Alex Marks says. "We're bullish on Nashville and see it as one of the most vibrant growth and development opportunities in the country."

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Developers visit Galesburg

By Kevin Sampier - The Peoria Journal Star
June 23, 2007

Business owners, Realtors, brokers tour former Maytag plant
 
Galesburg - Economic development leaders invited businesses to Galesburg on Friday in the hope they would help fill several million square feet of available space.
 
"It's one thing for me to talk about a (1 million square-foot) building," said Linda Utsinger, vice president of business development for the Galesburg Regional Economic Development Association. "It's another thing for people to actually see it."
 
GREDA, Tower Investments LLC., Industrial Realty Group and several other organizations invited real estate agents, brokers and business owners to the former Maytag plant on Monmouth Boulevard. They hoped to attract businesses that would lease space in the building.
 
Tower Investments and Industrial Realty Group own the 1.3-million square-foot former Maytag plant, the 850,000 square-foot Maytag warehouse and the nearly 1 million square-foot building that once housed Butler Manufacturing.

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