NORTH READING, MA-A 50,000-sf agreement is helping kick start the 2008 leasing season here along the Interstate 93 corridor. Premium Power Corp. is committing to five years at 87 Concord St, a single-story flex/R&D building owned by Howland Development Co. of Wilmington.

“We’re pretty happy about it,” relays Howland Associate Ken Oppenheim, who represented the landlord in-house with company principal William Yetman. Gary Finlayson was agent for Premium Power, which markets energy storage systems. Headquartered in North Andover, the firm will occupy about 90% of the 60,000-sf North Reading building. The agreement also paved the way for an 8,000-sf lease at Howland’s 155 West St. in Wilmington to accommodate a previous occupant of 87 Concord St.

The northern sector of Boston’s flex/R&D market has undergone dramatic swings this decade, including a brutal stretch from 2001 to 2005, but Oppenheim says Howland enjoyed a brisk 2007. “Things are going well,” Oppenheim tells, as evidenced by the firm’s leasing of all but a few thousand sf in its 1.5 million-sf portfolio. The velocity is credited partly to expanding technologies and emerging companies such as Premium Power, which has filled multiple locations locally since its founding in 2002.

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