Breakfast cereal and snack food giant General Mills said Tuesday it had opened a 1.5-million-square-foot distribution and customer service center in central Illinois.
Golden Valley, Minn.-based General Mills will operate the facility in the RidgePort Logistics Center development in Wilmington, Ill., about 40 miles southwest of Chicago. The site is the nation's largest planned, rail-served industrial park focused on incorporating mixed-use transportation services within the park, according to its owner, Miami-based commercial real estate firm Elion Partners.
The RidgePort Logistics Center is located near rail transportation lines run by BNSF and Union Pacific and road channels that include interstate highways 80 and 55, according to Elion. The full center includes 5.4 million square feet of developed space, with another 810,000-square-foot parcel currently in the works, Elion said.
General Mills' facility is expected to spark hiring and business development in the local warehousing, trucking, retail, and rail transportation sectors, officials said.
"The vision for RidgePort's phased development focuses not only on the infrastructure and location, but on service to the trucking profession," Shlomo Khoudari, co-founder and managing principal at Elion Partners, said in a statement. "The Chicagoland market is the nation's prime location to streamline and optimize regional and national logistics. Delivering a mixed-use logistics center to tenants like General Mills aligns the park with the continued changes in the transportation industry."