<B>By LAUREY LUMMUS</B> <FONT SIZE=-1><I>Staff Reporter</I></FONT>

A large chunk of commercial property, located at5825 Mark Dabbling Road, has been leased to the Quantum Corporation, furtherdepleting the inventory for companies seeking existing space.

Quantum has signed a five-year lease to move into the former Texas Instrumentsbuilding, which has stood vacant since 1992. The company will occupy 100,000square feet of the 150,000-square-foot building.

Pocol Holding Corp., which owns the building, held onto it for so long becauseit was seeking one tenant, according to Steve Bach, president of Bach CommercialBrokerage Co.

"It was a highly unusual fit," Bach said. "Quantum will also pay for renovations,which the owner was reluctant to do."

Bach said Quantum will be given the first right of refusal to occupy theadditional 50,000 square feet. Bach represented the property owners alongwith Mike McDowell, also of Bach Commercial.

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When asked about continuously disappearing inventory on the commercial front,Economic Development Corp. President Robert "Rocky" Scott said this is truein almost all desirable cities that are experiencing growth.

"Cities like Austin [and] Salt Lake are all running short on commercial space,"said Scott. "A lot of the relocating for companies is based on timing. Acompany may vacate a space and another one will be at the right place totake it over." Scott added several companies build the facilities designedto match their needs, and they are not in the market for an existing building.

Bach agrees with Scott’s statements.

"While this new lease reinforces the need in the Springs for new buildingof commercial space, it usually takes a company 18 to 24 months from thetime they decide to move, which provides ample time to erect a structureif necessary," said Bach.

The production department is expected to be finished and to begin operationsin the new facility by Oct. 15.

Quantum has contracted G.E. Johnson Construction Co. to do the renovationson the building. Project manager Joe Ostmeyer said the renovation will costthe company approximately $4 million.

"They are doing extensive remodeling," said Ostmeyer. "They will add moreoffices and support space." Ostmeyer added all plans are complete and renovationwill begin shortly.

Quantum leased the former Cray facility in 1995, spending around $2 millionto remodel the structure that houses the company’s Specialty Storage Group,which manufactures digital linear tape and solid disk storage products.

The former TI building will house around 150 of the group’s more than 700employees, according to Jeff Leidigh, senior manufacturing engineer responsiblefor facility set up. The remaining employees will stay at the Cray facility.

The Specialty Storage Group accounts for more than 7% of the company’s totalbusiness. Quantum reported earnings of $1.2 billion in the third quarterof Fiscal Year 1996.