Blue Origin spends $14 million to buy more space

Blue Origin factory
A Blue Origin engineer assembles a New Shepard parachute cover, with the crew capsule in the background at the company’s production facility in Kent, Wash. (Credit: Blue Origin)

Blue Origin, the space venture founded by Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos, has spent $14.1 million to buy 31 acres of land that’s earmarked for expansion of its headquarters in Kent, Wash.

Purchase of the undeveloped land at and around 21601 76th Av., just southwest of Blue Origin’s 26-acre main office and production facility, was reported in King County records last week. The transaction was brought to light on Dec. 26 by Seattle’s Daily Journal of Commerce.

The property has long been owned by members of Barnier family, who have been farming in the Kent Valley since the 1800s, and was sold through Bar-Gem LLC, a family business entity.

That plot of land has been the subject of Blue Origin’s expansion plans for more than a year. Kent land-use records describe a project that calls for the construction of about 236,000 square feet of warehouse area, and 102,900 square feet of office space. There’d also be significant roadway improvements, landscaping and paved areas for parking and truck maneuvering.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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