SANTEE – The 1,324-acre South Carolina Gateway Logistics Park reached a new milestone on Monday as officials celebrated the completion of a 125,000-square-foot speculative building.

“This building marks a milestone for the development of the 6 million-square-foot industrial park,” DP World Group Chairman and CEO Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem said during a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the speculative building.

“As one of the largest rail-served industrial parks in the state, the South Carolina Gateway will pave the way for new opportunities. The development will give customers access to a fully integrated park delivering significant benefits to the local community and enhancing the regional economy for years to come,” he said.

Dubai-based DP World’s park is located in what Orangeburg County officials call the Global Logistics Triangle, which is the area bordered by Interstate 26, Interstate 95 and U.S. Highway 301.

The company’s 125,000-square-foot spec building is an expandable Class A structure with tilt walls that can be subdivided for smaller users. The building sits on about 22 acres and is expandable to 159,200 square feet, according to marketing materials.

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The park’s master plan projects upwards of 6.5 million square feet of building space. About 350 acres are currently available for sale or build-to-suit development.

Company officials say the park can handle industrial, warehousing, manufacturing and ancillary services.

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In addition to the 125,000-square-foot building, there are also plans to build a 250,000-square-foot speculative building.

Orangeburg County Council in April agreed to provide DP World with financial incentives to develop additional parcels for the future buildings.

“In the coming weeks, we will complete the transformation of the park into a multi-modal industry park shared by Orangeburg and Dorchester counties,” Bin Sulayem said. “We look forward to welcoming tenants that will be an asset to the county and the great state of South Carolina.”

In March 2022, Georgia-based Premium Peanut announced it would locate its peanut-shelling facility in the park. The company is building its own building.

“Tenants like Premium Peanut are just the beginning of this development that will attract many quality tenants,” Bin Sulayem said. “This will create many full-time jobs and enable the influx of capital that will benefit the community for years to come.”

Bin Sulayem said as, “the global supply chain continues to face disruptions, multi-modal infrastructure is essential to address pressure points.”

“We aim to provide our customers with options to streamline trade flow in and out of the region,” he said.

DP World operates in 60 countries with 93 terminals and ports from Australia all the way to Latin America and Europe. The company handles 71 million containers a year.

Bin Sulayem specifically thanked Congressman James Clyburn, Orangeburg County Council Chairman Johnnie Wright and Orangeburg County Development Commission Chairman Kenneth Middleton for their support in helping to make the project a reality.

As part of a welcoming gift, Orangeburg County officials presented Bin Sulayem with a South Carolina flag.

Orangeburg County Councilman Johnny Ravenell said, “Growth is upon us.

“We are grateful and proud because any time you have a building of this sort, that means there are more jobs for the people here, not only for the Santee area but surrounding areas as well.”

Middleton said the ribbon-cutting ceremony was only the beginning.

“Today is a shining example of hope for the future in struggling times. It is an example of how things should be and can be if we truly work together. We are all blessed to be a part of brighter futures for years and years and years to come,” he said.

Middleton also spoke of the importance of patience.

“This project will change lives for untold centuries. The best is yet to come,” he said.

Santee Mayor Donnie Hilliard said the development can only be a positive for the town of Santee.

“We look forward to a very prosperous future,” Hilliard said.

“The Santee community, town council, the citizens are proud to see our family grow,” Hilliard said. “We are so excited to have the DP World team join the family.”

Orangeburg businessman Jim Roquemore, who sold the property for the project over 15 years ago, said former state Sen. John Matthews, D-Bowman, and current state Sen. Brad Hutto, D-Orangeburg, encouraged him to buy the property. He did and the rest is history.

He praised DP World for its patience.

“They have done a phenomenal job. It is first-class, of course – everything they do is first class and we are glad to have them in Santee,” he said.

Sen. Vernon Stephens, D-Bowman, said, “This is truly a dream come true.”

“Think back to 2005 and 2006 when we started talking about the logistics triangle and the impact of that development on the eastern portion of Orangeburg County with close proximity to 95, 301 and 26. It is here to help economically the communities of eastern Orangeburg County. I see this as a win-win for everyone,” he said.

“This is just the first step into many adventures we are going to have as far as economic development is concerned in rural Orangeburg County,” Stephens said.

State Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter, D-Orangeburg, said “I am just thrilled to be here to see this come to fruition.

“There have been a lot of conversations over the years about this particular site and I am hopeful that people will see this ribbon-cutting as the promise of what is to come.”

“Orangeburg County, especially the eastern end of Orangeburg County, is especially hot right now,” Cobb-Hunter continued. “I am just thrilled to see this kind of development come to Orangeburg County and especially to eastern Orangeburg County.”

S.C. Secretary of Commerce Harry M. Lightsey III said, “Being ready for prospective industry is key to sustained economic development success, and this new speculative building positions Orangeburg County for the future.

“We appreciate DP World’s commitment to the project and look forward to the positive impact of this development throughout the community.”

Premium Peanut President and CEO Karl Zimmer praised the country of Dubai for its innovation.

“In a very short period of time, Dubai has become truly a center of global trade as Dubai and DP World,” Zimmer said. “To accomplish these things takes vision, takes passion, dedication, patience, and that is what DP World has. That is why Premium Peanut is so proud to be a partner with DP World in this site. Premium Peanut has many of those characteristics as well.”

Orangeburg County Development Commission Executive Director Gregg Robinson noted that Orangeburg County has 11 industrial parks.

“This is going to be one of the absolute biggest you will see anywhere with over 1,300 acres,” he said.

Orangeburg County Administrator Harold Young said, “The County of Orangeburg is delighted about the new speculative building launch, and this economic development reflects County Council’s vision to make development in our community a reality.

Central SC Alliance Chairman Keller Kissam said, “DP World is partnering with an expansive business community in the county and bringing fresh opportunities for local workers.”

DP World Americas, a subsidiary of Dubai World, is the property owner.

DP World was originally founded in the 1970s as a terminal logistics company, but in recent years has focused on parks and logistics in an effort to complement its terminal operations.

DP World purchased the Orangeburg County property in 2006.

According to an OCDC flyer, about 806 acres of the site can be developed.

Land at the site is valued at $18,000 to $30,000 an acre, according to the OCDC flyer.

The site has power through Tri-County Electric Cooperative, natural gas from Dominion, water from the Lake Marion Regional Water System, sewer service from Orangeburg County/Santee, telecommunications through Verizon and Frontier and fire protection from the Santee Fire Service and Orangeburg County Fire Service.

The site also has access to CSX rail.

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