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CAMBRIDGE, MA-Perini Building Co., Inc. a wholly owned subsidiary of Framingham, MA-based Perini Corp. has been selected by Palm Inc., a manufacturer of handheld computer devices, to convert 45,000 sf of its leased office space at 300 Third St. into research laboratories for Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc., a locally based biotech company specializing in RNA interference research and therapeutics.

The complex lease deal involved Palm, which held a lease on the space, agreeing to terminate its lease on what will be the Alnylam portion of the property. The Beal Cos. LLP owns the 128,000-sf building which is located in the heart of Cambridge’s biotech research area.

The conversion project reunites the team that designed and built the facility in 2001: Perini Building Company, ADD Inc, and AHA Consulting Engineers. “The conversion of office space to advanced technology research laboratories will require constructing a new, structural steel mechanical penthouse, upgrading electrical service to the building, expanding its cooling capacity, and increasing gas service,” says Matt Collins, Perini Building Co.’s project manager.

While the office market in this city remains sluggish, the biotech market seems to be picking up. The city’s overall vacancy rate was at 24.6% according to Meredith & Grew’s most recent statistics while its biotech market rate was at 17.2%. The report indicates that tenant demand for office space in this market remains slow but biotech demand has increased.

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