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Knee-Deep in Biotechs

You can't go more than a few feet in Cambridge's Kendall Square without running into someone from a biotech, Kevin Bitterman from Polaris Partners tells Nature News.

While that means the neighborhood is known for being a hotbed of biotech savvy, it also means that it's getting harder for startups to find office space. Since 2012, Nature News says rents for labs have increased 13 percent while office space rents have jumped 26 percent, and landlords, naturally, mostly prefer more established companies.

"Companies that were only founded a couple of years ago are now gobbling up a lot of space," Eric Smith from the commercial-property firm Transwestern adds.

Bitterman says his new startup is considering space in the suburbs, and Unum Therapeutics' Chuck Wilson says it is about to sign a lease on space outside Cambridge. Nature News says others are likely to follow, and a mini-cluster may develop.

"We'll see how it evolves," Wilson says of his potential new suburban location. "But it'll be a very different feel."

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