‘Bio-center’ planned for downtown Bethesda

WASHINGTON — Developers StonebridgeCarras and the Donohoe Cos. will jointly develop a bio-center in downtown Bethesda, Maryland, to attract life sciences companies to the new co-locating facility.

The 175,000 square foot Bethesda Bio building will be developed at 8280 Wisconsin Avenue.

The building will focus its commercial space on bringing life sciences companies to the Bethesda Central Business District.

“The Bethesda Central Business District has continued to demonstrate its great success in attracting a wide range of companies to its premier mixed-use environment,” said Douglas Firstenberg, principal with StonebridgeCarras.

“It represents one of the most attractive untapped markets to locate life sciences near two world-class institutions — the National Institutes of Health and the Walter Reed National Medical Center,” Firstenberg said.

The purpose of the building will be to meet the need for premier lab space.

Already 75 percent of the commercial lab space in the D.C. region is located in Montgomery County’s I-270 corridor.

“One of the greatest challenges to continue the growth of Montgomery County’s outstanding Bio market is quantity and quality of commercial lab space,” said David Petr, president and CEO of the Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation.

“The development … allows Montgomery County to compete with other urban markets such as Cambridge in Boston and the East Bay in San Francisco to provide an urban option located next to the largest support and driver of bio research in the world at NIH.”

The developers have begun the approval process and expect to begin construction in the third quarter of 2019, with the building completed in the summer of 2021.

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