The depository, which is the first state-administered precious metals bullion depository in the U.S., began operations in Austin in June. The Leander location is expected to be complete in late 2019, according to a statement from the state comptroller’s office. It will be located on 10 acres on Heritage Grove Road, according to the statement.
“One of the benefits is having a good local community, the fabric of a community, a city council [and] a county that wants to have a depository here and that combination of all those partnerships are really critical to make the depository ultimately be successful,” Glenn A. Hegar, Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, told Community Impact Newspaper following the groundbreaking Dec. 12.
Gov. Greg Abbott signed the Texas Bullion Depository Bill into law in 2015, which determined that Texas would establish a state-administered depository. State agencies, U.S. citizens and residents, businesses and one day, other nations, can store precious metals at the depository, according to the statement from the comptroller's office.
Austin-based Lone Star Tangible Assets was selected by the comptroller’s office to construct and operate the bullion depository. In November 2018, it was announced that the Texas Bullion Depository would be located in Leander after City Council approved an economic incentive package with Lone Star Tangible Assets.
MHT Constructors LLC will build the 40,000-foot facility, which will be able to hold up to $350 billion worth of precious metals, according to the comptroller’s office’s statement. It could also expand in the future depending on demand.
Matt A. Ferris, chairman of Lone Star Tangible Assets and an executive director of the Texas Bullion Depository, said the economic impact of the project on Leander could come in several forms.
“We estimate 85 percent of the goods and services being provided for this infrastructure [are] Texas-based,” Ferris said. “Local excavation companies, all the contractors, et cetera.”
Furthermore, he said Lone Star Tangible Assets staff will likely relocate to Leander, adding to the city’s tax base.
Ferris said his team has considered security protocols from military installations, other depositories and Fort Knox and decided which ones will work for the new facility.
“We have the luxury of a blank canvas here and what that allows us to do is take the best part of those and the most up-to-date technology and integrate that into the whole project,” he said.