More than a year after selling its landmark Sherman Oaks office building, Sunkist Growers Inc. announced Tuesday it will begin moving to its new home in Santa Clarita in September.
The 120-year-old citrus growers’ cooperative will move into LNR Entrada Gateway Center at 27770 N. Entertainment Drive, which it bought for about $22 million last summer. The cooperative sold its 8.3-acre campus at 14130 Riverside Drive in Sherman Oaks to residential developer IMT Capital Inc. for about $36 million in February 2013.
“In the past few years, we have made significant advances on key strategic initiatives to position Sunkist for long-term growth and profitability – and the relocation of our headquarters is part of that strategy,” said Sunkist Chief Executive Russell Hanlin in a statement.
Sunkist’s lease on the Riverside Drive building is set to expire next August. Neither Sunkist nor representatives of IMT Capital returned requests for comment on whether the cooperative was being let out of its lease. The move to Santa Clarita will occur in phases but Sunkist did not release a timetable.
Last month, IMT began the entitlement process for its ICON Sherman Oaks, a $100 million project that seeks to redevelop the Sunkist property into a 360,000-square-foot mixed-use development of 298 apartments and commercial space with a six-story parking structure.
The proposal has already received pushback from the local community over the potential traffic congestion it might cause. Construction on the project, if approved, is well over a year away.