Rochester, NY SVN | Realty Performance Advisors has brokered the sale of the former Hawkeye Plant owned by Eastman Kodak Co. to WBS Capital Inc. The plant is located at 1447 St. Paul St. and is comprised of a seven-building, 760,000 s/f complex on 12.86 acres on the eastern bank of the Genesee River.
The facility which has been vacant since 2012, will be converted into mixed-use development. The project is estimated to cost $55.7 million, and will be completed in three phases.
Joe Rowley, Jr. and Joseph Rowley III of SVN exclusively represented Kodak.
Phase I consist of renovating Building 5, which is 406,000 s/f building, as a Foreign Trade Zone.
The project is anticipated to create 30 new full-time jobs. WBS Capital already has its first tenant, New Star FTZ Group. Phase II and III will consist of office, warehouse and affordable housing. The project is expected to be completed by 2020.
This site was owned by Kodak for over 100 years, with the majority of the buildings built from 1941 – 1944. Hawkeye was the site of Project Bridgehead, a top secret U.S. Government operation to develop film. The planes would arrive at the Rochester airport and taxi to a special location, the top-secret cargo was offloaded and taken to the Hawkeye plant. The cargo—aerial reconnaissance film—was processed and developed, turned into photographic images. These images were then sent to the U.S. government’s National Reconnaissance Center. The project peaked with some 525 staffers and employed more than 1,400 people starting in 1955 and into the late 1980’s; with more than 8 million feet of original and color positive film processed at Hawkeye.