Life Sciences Real Estate Update – May 2022 | Allen Matkins


Bullet – April 29

As demand for lab space among life sciences companies continues to skyrocket, developers are increasingly looking to a new category of construction to meet that ongoing need. Enter office-to-lab conversions, which logged the steepest gains in construction last year. Such projects accounted for nearly 10 million square feet of new construction in the top 12 US life sciences markets at the end of last year, according to CBRE, up 49% from the beginning of 2021. Ground-up lab construction increased 42% in comparison. Boston led the charge in terms of square footage under conversion as of the first quarter, followed by San Diego, Raleigh-Durham, Los Angeles, and the Washington DC-Baltimore metro.


Bullet Commercial Observer – April 18

Investors are planning to put a lot more capital into health care real estate in 2022, including in life sciences space, medical office buildings, and ambulatory service centers, according to a new national survey by CBRE. CBRE now estimates $25 billion in equity will be deployed into the sector this year due to the bullish sentiment, the resiliency of health care real estate during the pandemic, and persistent demand. This estimate is further supported by 84% of survey respondents saying they plan to be “net buyers” of health care real estate in 2022, focusing mostly on behavioral health centers and life sciences assets.

Bullet Commercial Property Executive – April 14

According to a recent Cushman and Wakefield report, investment in biotech was up 12.7% year-over-year in 2021, while private equity capital and public National Institutes of Health funding targeting life science assets reached $78 billion the same year—a record for the sector. The life science industry’s current significance for real estate is undeniable. Matthew Fickett, principal at SGA, is concerned with creating energy-efficient, net zero labs. In a detailed interview with Commercial Property Executive, he shared industry insights about what energy-efficiency means for lab buildings, while touching upon market specifics, conversions, and predictions for the sector.


Bullet Connect CRE – April 29

Breakthrough Properties, a joint venture of Tishman Speyer and Bellco Capital, has reached the final closings for the Breakthrough Life Science Property Fund. The venture raised $3 billion in direct capital and co-investments, to scale a global portfolio of ecosystems for early-, mid-, and late-stage life science companies. It is believed to be the largest real estate fund dedicated exclusively to the life sciences sector, excluding recapitalizations of existing portfolios, according to CBRE and JLL Research.

Bullet The San Mateo Daily Journal – May 2

A massive new biotech campus proposed in Burlingame received rave reviews from the City Council and Planning Commission this week, offering a glimpse at the Bayfront’s future as a slate of similar projects are expected to transform the area in coming years. The DivcoWest development is set for a 12-acre site overlooking the Bay. It is also among the first to embrace the city’s new requirements designed to address projected sea level rise.

Bullet The Real Deal – April 25

The state’s stem cell agency, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), will move its headquarters from Oakland to South San Francisco. The move to 601 Gateway Blvd. puts CIRM squarely in the region’s original biopharmaceutical hub as it works to promote late-stage clinical trials and bring to market the medical technologies it has funded for nearly two decades. The 12-story office tower is owned by a joint venture of real estate investment trusts Alexandria Real Estate Equities and Boston Properties.

Bullet The San Diego Union-Tribune – April 8

Neurocrine Biosciences has leased 535,000 square feet for a new headquarters campus at Aperture Del Mar — highlighting the continued demand for top tier lab space in San Diego. The lease ranks among the largest one-time transactions in recent memory for the region’s life sciences sector. It comes on the heels of Bristol Myers Squibb committing to a 427,000-square-foot, yet-to-be-constructed building in University City that is being developed by Alexandria Real Estate Equities.

Bullet East Bay Times – April 7

A veteran developer has purchased a dying South Bay shopping mall, with plans to convert the big-box retail buildings in the center into spaces to entice life science, biotech, and tech companies. Presidio Bay Ventures has acquired Charleston Plaza, located in Mountain View and Palo Alto, according to documents filed with the Santa Clara County Recorder’s Office. The shopping center, located at a prominent spot near the interchange of U.S. Highway 101 and Rengstorff Avenue, has suffered a string of exits of some of its primary retailers in the last few years.

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