(Read more on the industrial market.)

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HARLEYSVILLE, PA-Following a competitive bid process, AlmacGroup, a Craigavon, Northern Ireland-based pharmaceutical company,has selected Skanska USA to construct its new North Americanheadquarters on 40 acres of former farmland here, which includesspace for future expansion. The initial phase will consist of twobuildings aggregating 240,000 sf.

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"The final configuration of the buildings hasn't been fullydetermined yet," says Ed Szwarc, Skanska EVP and general manager ofthe Stockholm-based company's Philadelphia regional office, whichis based in Blue Bell. "One of the buildings will be office, andthe other will be a warehouse and R&D facility," he tellsGlobeSt.com. The all-in cost is $100 million, including the priceof the land.

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Groundbreaking is scheduled for second-quarter 2008. Thebuildings will be constructed almost simultaneously. "There may bea one-month lag between them," Szwarc says. Both are expected toreach completion in first quarter 2010. There is no timeline yetfor a second phase, which he says will take place as needed.

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Skanska has a specialty in construction of hospitals and lifescience facilities. The Philadelphia region encompasses SouthernNJ, Pennsylvania and Delaware, and Szwarc says, "90% of thisoffice's business is devoted to those specialties."

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Almac provides R&D and manufacturing services topharmaceutical and biotechnology industries worldwide. It willrelocate and consolidate 495 employees from its existing businessdivisions in Audubon and Yardley and add more than 262 new jobs atthe new headquarters within three years. The company also projectsthat new hires will total at least 400 by 2013.

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The state's Department of Community and Economic Development hasassembled an incentive package of slightly more than $9 million forthe project. The package consists of a $4.5-million grant from theinfrastructure and facilities improvement program, which will bedispersed over 10 years; a $2-million Pennsylvania IndustrialDevelopment Authority loan; a nearly $1.3-million infrastructuredevelopment grant, a $400,000 opportunity grant, $100,000 incustomized job training funds, and $786,000 in job creation taxcredits. Almac is also eligible to apply for a $10-million,low-interest loan through the Citizens Job Bank program.

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