BELLEVUE, WA—Skanska purchased the land at the intersection ofNE 8th St. and 108th Ave. NE for The Eight in July 2018. And now,the team is finalizing the design for final administrative designreview and approval, securing the necessary permits andentitlements, and then shift focus to construction in the nextcouple of months.

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The 25-floor class-A office tower encompasses 540,000 squarefeet and is designed with large structural braces to accommodate aside core construction. This allows for large flexible floorplatesfor all types of tenants and densities.

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The Eight also features seven alternating indoor/outdoorexterior balconies. The development has 7,000 square feet of openpublic space, 12,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space andan additional 1,200-square-foot retail pavilion.

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"Our team has spent a considerable amount of time listening towhat is desired most from our stakeholders, and we are reallyexcited about how the design is dynamically evolving to serve ourtenants, the community and the city of Bellevue," said MurphyMcCullough, executive vice president and regional manager ofSkanska USA Commercial Development in Seattle. "The Eight isdesigned to encourage a richer, inclusive experience for companies,the public and for the Eastside community at large."

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The Eight's ground-floor level features a 6,000-square-foot openliving room space, health-conscious HVAC system, touchless buildingcontrols, and ample storefront operability to promote health andwellness within the building.

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Tenant amenities at The Eight include a dedicated floor fortenant event spaces, a health and wellness center that opens ontoan outdoor patio and an outdoor deck that offers tenants a place toretreat. Amenities also include bicycle commuter facilities, andelectric car and bike charging.

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While no tenants have been signed as of yet, the building isdesigned to be among the most flexible towers in the market so itcan accommodate either multiple tenants or a single large tenant,GlobeSt.com learns.

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"A few things we continue to hear from the prospective tenantmarket in terms of desires are tenants want a great ground planethat delivers a third place for tenants and the community. In TheEight, the large living room serves as that blend between thegathering space and retail," Charlie Foushee, vice president ofdevelopment for Skanska USA Commercial Development in Seattle,tells GlobeSt.com. "Tenants want diversity in a building'sofferings. They want places to gather, places to meet, places tomeet one-on-one, places to have a drink, eat, work out, and placesto be outside. The Eight offers all of those things and wasdesigned with all of that in mind. Tenants want flexibility. To beclear, they wanted flexibility before COVID, and flexibility is noweven more important. The Eight's floorplate offers ultimateflexibility because a side core allows less encumbered space thanwith a traditional core. There are no columns, higher ceilings thanother developers are offering and extensive window lines that allowthe maximum amount of daylight as well."

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The Eight is located near major Bellevue employers in thedowntown core including Microsoft's campus, Amazon, Salesforce,Paccar, Symetra and Concur. The location is a short walk from thenew light rail station opening in 2023 as well as the Bellevuetransit center. The site is within walking distance from TheBellevue Collection, downtown hotels, local restaurants andentertainment venues. It has direct freeway access to Interstate405.

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The Eight is Skanska's sixth development project in the PugetSound region and second project in Bellevue since it begandevelopment operations in 2011.

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There are some key factors that position the Puget Sound officemarket to fare better than most in the wake of COVID-19, includingthe temporary nature of local office job losses and the resiliencyof the specific industries that occupy office space in the region,according to a recent report by CBRE.

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Industries deemed stable amid the pandemic (mature tech, lifesciences, government) occupy 41.2 million square feet of officespace across the Puget Sound region, almost 40% of total officeinventory.

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In contrast, less-resilient industries (aerospace, retail,co-working, tech start-ups) account for only 16.5 million squarefeet or just under 15% of office space. Mature tech firms have thelargest share of occupancy and have thus far outperformed themarket in the wake of COVID-19, accounting for more than one-thirdof tenant demand, half of lease volume and less than 4% of layoffssince March 12, says the report.

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Lisa Brown

Lisa Brown is an editor for the south and west regions of GlobeSt.com. She has 25-plus years of real estate experience, with a regional PR role at Grubb & Ellis and a national communications position at MMI. Brown also spent 10 years as executive director at NAIOP San Francisco Bay Area chapter, where she led the organization to achieving its first national award honors and recognition on Capitol Hill. She has written extensively on commercial real estate topics and edited numerous pieces on the subject.