CARY – Construction has started on Sage Products’ 200,000-square-foot warehouse and distribution center in Cary, and project leaders said the facility is expected to be operational by the end of the year.
The first phase of the expansion will add about 50 jobs, while the second phase – which would add an additional 610,000 square feet of warehouse, manufacturing, office and parking space by 2021 – is expected to add about 300 jobs, village officials have said.
Sage bought the 27 acres of land east of its current facility, 3909 Three Oaks Road, for about $3.3 million in December, records show.
Although work had already started a couple of weeks ago on the vacant lot, about 50 people came out Wednesday morning for a ceremonial groundbreaking.
“Obviously, this is a celebration of Sage’s past and all that we’ve accomplished in this community [and] that we’re here today,” Sage Products President and CEO emeritus Scott Brown said.
“But more than anything else, it’s a celebration of our future with McHenry County, with the village of Cary and obviously for all the opportunities that we think will come forward in the years to come.”
Sage Products has been in its existing facility in Cary since 2001, and since it started in 1971 has had locations in Hebron, Crystal Lake and at another location in Cary, according to the company’s website.
Michigan-based Stryker Corp. bought Sage Products in February 2016 for about $2.78 billion.
Sage Products had considered another location outside of Cary, but the village made the expansion doable for them, in part by allowing for the closure of Sage Parkway, Cary Mayor Mark Kownick said.
Although some residents voiced concerns about the road closure, ultimately it was approved by the Village Board, and Kownick said there have not been many complaints since.
“This is a great economic development piece – it fits in great with what our plan is to increase our industrial presence,” Kownick said.
Sage Products has about 850 employees, Vice President and General Manager for Sage Products Bill Howes said, and Kownick estimated about 100 of those people live in Cary.
Products Sage Products makes all are aimed at preventing adverse events for patients in hospitals, and improving patients and caregivers lives, Howes said. The company always is looking to solve the next problem in health care, he said.
“As we solve that problem and develop that solution, the end result is you sell more products, you have more products and you need more space,” Howes said. “So that’s how we’ve grown this business for 45 years.”
The space where the existing distribution center is will be replaced by more manufacturing space, Vice President Commercial Operations for Sage Products Sean Haley said.
When the project was up for approval in the fall, Sage Products amended its original plans to add a private driveway for trucks leaving the property to the east and exiting on Georgetown Drive.
The company also said the addition would have a larger setback than its current building and would have landscaping to cover the loading docs to the south, to help address some resident’s concerns.
As to why the company stuck in Cary, it just made sense to stay near the existing facility, Haley said.
Sage Products has a visible presence throughout the county, from the Sage YMCA in Crystal Lake to the Centegra Sage Cancer Center in McHenry. Through donations and sponsorships, Sage Products estimated earlier that its employees have supplied area nonprofits with $3.71 million over the past 10 years.
“We’ve done well here,” Haley said. “Why would we go anywhere else?”