In a complex land deal, Woodward Inc. has swapped its 39-acre Loveland campus for property at 753 Champion Drive owned by Southgate One, a company owned by Windsor developer Martin Lind.
The site is adjacent to Woodward’s existing Rocky Mountain Technology and Innovation Center, 871 Champion Drive, and gives the aerospace company the opportunity to expand its technology campus. Woodward said it paid $7.6 million for the Champion property and sold the Loveland campus for $5.9 million.
The deals were finalized Sept. 25.
The new Windsor site will eventually house Woodward’s Air Valves Engineering & Testing facility currently housed in Loveland.
In the meantime, Lind is leasing the Loveland site back to Woodward for up to three years while it transitions its 293 employees to its Fort Collins Lincoln campus or to Windsor, the company said.
Once the lease expires, Lind said he would consider the next chapter for the Loveland building.
“I’d love to see the facility stay intact and employ a bunch of people,” Lind said. “But if all of our attempts end up not coming to fruition, it’s a great piece of property and it could go back to a complementary use in that neighborhood.”
Currently, the campus is surrounded by single-family and multifamily homes. “One option is residential,” Lind said.
Woodward’s purchase provides more opportunity for “broader and deeper test capability and the expansion of our technology campus in Colorado,” the company said in a news release.
Selling the Loveland campus allows the company to “optimize its Colorado footprint,” said Steve Stiesmeyer, director of corporate real estate for Woodward.
“This is a great day for our companies but more importantly a greater day for Windsor and the surrounding areas,” Lind said in a news release. Woodward “is an ideal employer and having them expand their footprint in Windsor will provide outstanding dividends far into the future.”
Stacy Miller, Windsor’s economic development director, said any growth in high-paying jobs “will have a significant economic impact.”
“I wouldn’t anticipate a lot of people moving to Windsor because of that, but to have them in our area potentially spending daytime dollars is nice,” said Miller, who now wants to find more retail opportunities in the area.
“Otherwise, there’s a lot of (sales tax) leakage to Johnstown and Loveland,” she said.
Woodward has been a presence in Loveland since 1991 when it first acquired the site at 3800 Wilson Ave. It expanded the building in 2013 before building its new international headquarters on Lincoln Avenue in Fort Collins in 2015. It has since renovated its Drake campus, where Woodward has been housed since 1963.
Peter Kast of CBRE represented Woodward in the deal.
“This was a strategic move by Woodward to concentrate its real estate footprint,” Kast said in a statement. “Woodward’s continued investment in Northern Colorado is a testament to the strength and resiliency of our region.”
According to CBRE Research, sales in the Northern Colorado industrial market remained strong through the first half of the year, with a total volume of $65.2 million, up 64.5% over the same period last year.
As part of this deal, Lind purchased the former Bobcat of the Rockies building in the Iron Mountain complex at 1015 Champion Drive through a 1031 transaction, which enables him to defer capital gains tax and depreciation recapture by reinvesting in other property.
Pat Ferrier is a senior reporter covering business, health care and growth issues in Northern Colorado. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please support her work and that of other Coloradoan journalists by purchasing a subscription today.