BioMed Lands Tenant for 300 KSF Bay Area Building

Zymergen's 12-year lease at Emeryville Center for Innovation ignites an expansion of the life sciences campus in Emeryville, Calif.
Tim Schoen, President & CEO, BioMed Realty. Image courtesy of BioMed Realty

BioMed Realty has landed a tenant to occupy the entire 300,000-square-foot life sciences office building at Emeryville Center for Innovation in Emeryville, Calif. Molecular manufacturing technology company Zymergen committed to the San Francisco Bay Area property, inking a 12-year lease to house its headquarters in the six-story structure at 5300 Chiron Way.

BioMed’s lease agreement with Zymergen comes just six months after the life sciences real estate company acquired Emeryville Center from owner-occupier Novartis in a $135 million transaction involving what was then a 250,000-square-foot building and adjacent developable land parcels. “We are keenly aware of the continued demand for quality life science and innovation space in the Bay Area. While we did not have a set timeline, we are not at all surprised that a rapidly growing tenant based in Emeryville is in place in such a short amount of time,” Tim Schoen, president & CEO of BioMed Realty, told Commercial Property Executive. Zymergen currently makes its home a half-mile away at EmeryStation West at 5980 Horton St.


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With Zymergen’s lease in place, BioMed will expedite its planned transformation of Emeryville Center into a premier destination for the bustling local life sciences community. The company will build an additional 830,000 square feet of state-of-the-art accommodations at the site in a series of phases. “We remain in early stages with the future development strategy,” said Schoen. “The absorption announced yesterday for the entire existing building certainly helps accelerate our plans in partnership with the City of Emeryville.” 

Investing big in California

The Emeryville Center development program is just one of many projects BioMed has launched in the Golden State since Blackstone purchased the company in an $8 billion deal. Just weeks ago, in September, BioMed saw the fruits of a $92 million investment with the grand opening of the 137,500-square-foot Center for Novel Therapeutics at the University of California San Diego’s Science Research Park campus. Earlier this year, the company commenced construction of Phase II of the 1.5 million-square-foot Gateway of Pacific campus in South San Francisco.

“We have invested $1.1 billion in the State of California since 2016 with the support of Blackstone, consistent with our strategy to allocate capital in urban and innovation locations,” Schoen noted. San Francisco ranks as the most innovative city in the world, according to a report by JLL, and San Francisco and San Diego hold the second and third positions on the list of the top life sciences clusters in the U.S.