Developer pitches plan for Boston R&D and manufacturing complex

The Boston biopharma boom has intensified demand for R&D space in and around the city, with firms big and small alike setting up in the area. While many of the sites focus on early research, the candidates they move into the clinic and beyond will need production capacity, and this has led to a new development project.

Real estate developer the Kavanagh Advisory Group is behind the project, which will turn a vacant lot on the south Boston waterfront into a 355,000-square-foot biopharma R&D and manufacturing complex. Kavanagh detailed its $116 million development plan for the site--which formerly housed a U.S. Navy warehouse--in a submission to the Boston Civic Design Commission. The plan is to construct a four-floor building that houses multiple biopharma R&D and manufacturing tenants and their 1,000 employees.

Kavanagh is seeking LEED certification to show the building's environmental credentials. A LEED checklist estimates the site will meet Boston zoning codes, but Kavanagh is aiming to exceed the minimum requirements. The developer is targeting a silver LEED rating, and it intends to encourage tenants to seek LEED certification for Commercial Interiors. Which companies will sign up as tenants--and what proportion will use the site for manufacturing--is unclear.

Observers think there is enough interest to warrant the development. "There's a lot of demand by companies to be closer to the centers of innovation in Boston and Cambridge, but space is at a premium. The more built-out space that's ready for life sciences companies to occupy, the more companies we will be able to attract to our region," Angus McQuilken, head of communications at the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, told the Boston Herald.

- here's the Herald article
- read FierceBiotech's take
- check out the submission