Opus Group has begun construction of a new headquarters and manufacturing plant for Cherne Industries in Shakopee.
Terms haven’t been disclosed for the project, which will include a 131,000-square-foot facility to be located north of Hwy. 169 near the corner of Old Brick Yard Road and Vierling Drive.
Cherne is a 115-employee company that makes high-tech sewer-pipe plugs and testing equipment for large underground sewer systems and water-treatment plants.
Construction is expected to finish early next year. The complex will feature a factory, a separate and large loading-dock building, and 177 parking stalls. The main building will have amenities including a fitness center, locker rooms, prayer rooms and rooftop solar panels.
The new building will replace Cherne’s facility in Edina. The headquarters is a boon to the city of Shakopee because Cherne’s employment is expected to grow from 115 employees to 150 in five years, said Shakopee planning and development director Michael Kerski.
He added that to make the deal work, the city sold the land to Opus so it could develop the property for Cherne. City officials are excited about the development because Cherne’s jobs are high-tech, involve the use of robots and pay about $20 an hour. The project will additionally contribute to the city’s tax base after the expiration of an eight-year property-tax abatement plan, Kerski said.
Opus officials noted they worked with Shakopee for 18 months to create a space that meets Cherne’s needs.
“This facility will allow Cherne to continue its aggressive growth pattern by servicing the needs of our customers, providing a first-class customer experience and having a workplace environment that is top notch for our associates,” said David Biron, Cherne Industries general manager.
Opus is wearing several hats for this project, including developer, architect, builder, interior designer and engineer. Real estate-services firm Colliers International represented Opus with the purchase and lease of the land, and CBRE, a brokerage and capital-markets company, helped with financing. The Boston-based private-equity and real estate-investment firm Cabot Properties has subsequently bought the land and will lease the future buildings to Cherne.
The project is the latest in a string of developments in Shakopee. They include the nearly finished doubling of the KEB America elevator-parts plant, plus plans to redevelop 350 acres of land at Canterbury Park into a mix of residential, commercial, retail and entertainment uses.
Powers Development plans to build a mixed-use development project in town that includes a Department of Veterans Affairs clinic at the corner of Marystown Road and 17th Avenue.
Other projects include the West Shakopee Gateway, the renovation of the Scott County Government Center, and several multifamily housing complexes.