NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The Broad Institute says cramped quarters at its three existing Cambridge, Mass., sites prompted it to sign a 10-year lease for 80,000 square feet less than 10 minutes away in the same city.
Broad is set to move some of its operations and staff into part of 301 Binney St., "during the late summer of 2010," Nicole Davis, a spokeswoman for the institute, told GenomeWeb Daily News. "We're pretty tight on space right now, so we're expanding."
She said Broad has yet to decide which operations will move into 301 Binney, and which will stay at the institute's three existing locations. The Broad's operations are scattered at 7 Cambridge Center, a seven-story lab building completed by the Broad in 2006; as well as at 320 Charles St., and 5 Cambridge Center.
"Those spaces will continue, for the short term," Davis said.
The new lease comes at a time when the Broad is in growth mode. The institute recently expanded its number of associate members by 35, and is conducting open searches for two new core faculty members that it plans to add, Davis said.
"All of that translates into demand for research space," she said.
At 301 Binney, the Broad will follow its recent pattern of locating near each other research groups that are not ordinarily together, in an effort to build new collaborative projects, said Davis.
The new lease was announced Thursday by BioMed Realty Trust, a publicly-held real estate investment trust based in San Diego. BioMed has a 20 percent stake in the limited liability company that owns 301 Binney in a joint venture with institutional investors advised by Prudential Real Estate Investors.
The five-story, 420,000-square-foot 301 Binney was completed last year.
"We were pretty set on Cambridge," Davis said. 301 Binney "is ideal with respect to our existing locations, and the space is also ideal for our research. That's what really drove us to the new location."
During an Oct. 29 conference call with investors, Kent Griffin, BioMed's president and CFO, said the Broad's rent fell within the average for deals at 301 Binney, in the mid-$60s per square foot, plus $150 per square foot tenant improvement allowance.
The Broad Institute becomes the second major life sciences tenant to take space at 301 Binney, bringing the property to 47 percent leased, BioMed spokesman Richard Howe said. The first is Ironwood Pharmaceuticals, which leases about 150,000 square feet there.