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Army rail site sold for office in PEDC deal

A Canadian-based oilfield service company looking to locate an office in Pecos is set to purchase a parcel of land belonging to the Pecos Economic Development Corp., after an extended effort to combine two smaller sections of land from the former Pecos Army Airbase’s rail yard into one larger site.

EnerFlex, out of Calgary, Canada, will buy the one 1 2/3-acres of land on Interstate 20 and Tolliver Street, following a land swap with Kevin Duke, who owned .35 acres within the 1.32 acres already owned by the PEDC. Duke will get land owned by the PEDC, which Duke’s company had been using at First and Ash streets, president Ken Winkles told board members during their Monday meeting.

“I congratulate you because that’s one of the toughest things I ever did,” said PEDC board member Tony Trujillo of the sale. He told the board he’s had to survey the area between Tolliver and Moore streets in the past. “It’s the remnant of the military yard. That was the only tract that was never conveyed.”

“This is where all their (rail) spurs were,” Trujillo said. “This was the military warehouse, with all their food and merchandise that was at the Airbase.”

“They would spur off the Pecos Valley Southern – the spur started where the Beverage Bin is – and they would go along Stafford,” Trujillo said. Other spurs would then connect the rail line along Stafford with the warehouses.

The warehouse and rail spur continued to be used into the 1980s before being abandoned. Trujillo said he believed Pecos Agricultural was given the rail right-of-way, while Duke and Bob Bates owned the warehouse land.

Board members approved the action, and Winkles said the sale to EnerFlex should be finalized before the end of the month. The company’s website said it has 50 locations, including two in the Midland-Odessa area.

“They were somewhat dismayed that they didn’t get the purchase done before the new city ordinance on commercial landscaping,” Winkles said. “But they’re moving forward on theirs.”

In other action, the board approved using a $108,000 payment from Patriot Resources to help pay off the remaining $134,000 in principal on the PEDC’s Trans-Pecos Foods note. The company shut down in May of 2011, two years after the PEDC board approved an agreement to provide the company with $462,000 through the Texas Leverage Fund, which the company plans to use to modernize equipment at its plant on I-20. The PEDC has been paying off the note to the Leverage Fund since that time.

“We have an unexpected revenue source coming in from the (Pecos RTC) test track area, being a road and several paths,” Winkle said. Patriot plans to build a road around the perimeter of the nine sections of land that make up the Pecos RTC site.

“We already planned on Sept. 30 to pay off the principal that we do every year,” he said. “If we were to take this revenue from Patriot, we would have to come up with approximately $24,000 that we currently have. That would save us $10,000 worth of interest over the next three years.”