Boston Properties Adds to Lab Portfolio With $100M Buy

The acquisition builds on the company’s 4.9 million square feet of life science and office space in the Waltham/Lexington region of Massachusetts.

200 West St.
200 West St. Image courtesy of Boston Properties Inc.

Boston Properties Inc. has acquired two lab properties totaling 153,000 square feet in Waltham, Mass., in metro Boston. 153 and 211 Second Ave. were acquired from an affiliate of Montana Avenue Capital Partners LLC for a gross price of $100 million in cash.


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The buildings are fully leased to pharma company Sanofi Genzyme.

The acquisition builds on Boston Properties’ 4.9 million square feet of lab and Class A office properties in the Waltham/Lexington region of Massachusetts.

Among them is 200 West St., a 272,000-square-feet property that’s adjacent to the Second Avenue buildings. A portion of 200 West St. was recently converted to lab space and is fully leased to Translate Bio. In addition, A123 Systems, a lithium-ion battery manufacturer, operates an R&D center there.

In a move that a local broker praised as “a stroke of genius,” Boston Properties in late 2019 began converting about half of the four-story Class A office building, then only 10 years old, into lab space. Their reward was a prompt lease from Translate Bio.

Boston Properties’ Life Sciences arm holds a portfolio of more than 3 million square feet of life science space, mostly in metro Boston/Cambridge, San Francisco and Los Angeles. In addition, the company has about 6 million square feet of life sciences-focused development opportunities, including about 1 million square feet of lab developments and redevelopments that are expected to deliver in the next 24 to 36 months.

The center of the center

Last August, an undisclosed buyer paid $330 million for Reservoir Woods East, a 1.3 million-square-foot office and lab/R&D campus in Waltham. The seller was a venture that included affiliates of Marcus Partners and The Davis Cos.

Metro Boston remains “the epicenter of the life sciences industry,” and the triangle formed by Cambridge, Lexington and Waltham is the center of that, according to a first-quarter report from Colliers.

Building owners continue to benefit from tight vacancies (5.9 percent overall), but the 5.1 million square feet of space under construction, as against an inventory of 31.1 million square feet, should give tenants more options in the near future.

In all, vacancies, new supply, demand and rents are all expected to rise over the next 12 months, Colliers predicts.

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