Davis Cos., Invesco Deliver New Phase of Life Science Campus

The facility also features dedicated tenant storage rooms adjacent to the loading dock. Image courtesy of The Davis Cos.

The Davis Cos. and Invesco Real Estate have delivered 101 Smith Place, a 161,616-square-foot build-to-suit Class A life science and laboratory building in Cambridge, Mass. The facility represents the second phase of The Quad, a 554,019-square-foot campus.

In 2021, Wells Fargo Bank originated $118.8 million in construction financing for the project, CommercialEdge data reveals. The note is set to mature this December.

The general contractor was Erland Construction, while Jacobs provided design services. AHA Consulting Engineers and McNamara/Salvia served as building and structural engineers, respectively. Haley & Aldrich, BSC Group and Vanasse Hangen Brustlin also joined the development efforts.

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To make way for 101 Smith Place, Erland demolished two buildings and a metal garage. Following the flattening of the existing technical office structures, construction began in 2021. Two years later, in 2023, the crew topped out the life science project.

In the spring of 2025, Davis plans to break ground on The Quad’s third and final phase—15 Wilson Road, a 280,000-square-foot life science project.

Probing the life science facility

The three-story building encompasses 60,000-square-foot floorplates with a live load of 100 pounds per square foot. The column bay spacing measures 21 feet on center, with 53 feet between the exterior and building core, while the floor-to-floor heights range between 15 to 18 feet.

Additional features include one PH neutralization room, two elevated loading docks, covered bays, one freight elevator with a 5,000-pound capacity, as well as a 16,821-square-foot mechanic penthouse equipped with a central chiller and hot water plant sporting AHU and lab exhaust.

Utilizing sustainable furniture, EV charging stations and MERV 14 filters with green cleaning policies in place, 101 Smith Place attained LEED Gold, WiredScore Gold and Fitwel certifications. Amenities include a gym, lounge areas, green spaces, bike parking, as well as 154 vehicle-parking spaces.

Samsung SDI, a subsidiary of Samsung Electronics, inked a 10-year, 13,604-square-foot lease for a purpose-built space on the facility’s third floor. The suite’s build-out is expected to reach completion this December.

CBRE Vice Chairman Eric Smith and Senior Vice President McKenna Teague, as well as Vice President Tess Chandler and Associate Jack Scribner, represented the landlord in the lease proceedings. Montivista Real Estate Investment Vice President Ruyi Cai led the leasing negotiations on behalf of the tenant.

The facility is located roughly 1 mile from downtown Cambridge, while Boston’s city center is some 10 miles southeast. Interstate 95’s junction with Massachusetts Route 2 is more than 8 miles northwest. Several bus stops, retail options and quick-service restaurants are within walking distance.

Boston’s office scene

As of May, metro Boston’s office supply pipeline counted upward of 13.6 million square feet of under-construction space—representing 5.4 percent of stock—and topping the national charts, followed by San Francisco (5.1 million square feet) and Dallas (4.8 million square feet), according to a recent CommercialEdge report.

With life science space in high demand, Boston’s office vacancy rate rested at 12.1 percent in May, several hundred basis points below the national average of 17.8 percent during the same period. However, the metro’s vacancy rate saw a significant 180 basis points increase year-over-year through May, as opposed to the country’s moderate 80 basis points vacancy growth during the same interval, the report shows.

Boston’s average asking office rent witnessed a 10.8 percent spike year-over-year during the same period, marking the largest growth in the markets tracked by CommercialEdge, surpassing Dallas (6.6 percent) and Miami (6.2 percent), the report indicated.

Some of this year’s new developments in Boston include US2’s 10 Prospect St., a 205,000-square-foot life science facility in Somerville, Mass., and Andover Technology Park’s 250,000-square-foot first phase.

The latter was built by a joint venture between Celera Properties and True North Management Group, which redeveloped the properties at 300 and 600 Federal St. in Andover, Mass.

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