"Because of the overall economy, tenants are being verycautions," relayed Flaherty, adding, "There is a big disconnectwhere people seem to think everything is falling apart." Openingthe CM&G-sponsored program, Flaherty said many tenants fail torecognize the solid fundamentals of Cambridge and its dearth ofspace, especially for class A buildings in Kendall Square, aconstituency whose vacancy rate is a thin 5.8%. "It's very tightright now," Flaherty said. "If you are a tenant wanting to stay in(Kendall Square), you're probably going to have to look at abuild-to-suit." That is especially true, he explained, forcompanies needing more than one floor, such as Forrester Research,out looking for 200,000sf.

Flaherty was joined at the Cambridge overview by CM&Ginvestment chief Lisa Campoli and former company staffer DanielO'Connell, now the state's Secretary of Housing and EconomicDevelopment in Governor Deval Patrick's administration. The guestspeaker noted that he grew up a few blocks from the event in athree-decker, back when Kendall Square was a blighted industrialdistrict bereft of the global pharmaceutical and technologycompanies there today--a "super-cluster" O'Connell cited as a keyreason that the new economy "augers well for Cambridge."

The city, he said, "has gone through the transition and islooking very strong going forward." O'Connell also predictedpassage this week of Patrick's $1 billion bond bill to support thelife sciences sector, a measure the secretary said would beespecially beneficial to his hometown. The bill would provide $750million for biotech-related capital expenditures andinfrastructure. Another $250 million would be used to offsetanticipated cutbacks in National Institutes of Health funding,providing a financing source to keep emerging firms from fleeing torivals such as California and North Carolina. The initiatives "giveus better tools to work with" than competing markets, O'Connelloffered.

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