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SHELTON, CT-Cara Therapeutics has ended a search that lasted about a year and has decided to relocate its corporate headquarters from Tarrytown, NY to more than 50,000 sf of space at One Parrott Dr. here, GlobeSt.com has learned.

The biotechnology firm, which was founded in 2004, will be relocating by the spring of next year from about 15,000 sf of space at 765 Old Saw Mill River Rd., part of the Landmark at Eastview complex, to 53,040 sf of space at the 101,000-sf One Parrott Dr., owned by Cambridge Hanover LP of New Canaan.

CB Richard Ellis’s senior vice president Sean Cahill and vice president Sue Dengenis negotiated the lease on behalf of Cara Therapeutics. Michael Dillon of Cambridge Hanover represented the building owner.

“Cara extensively researched the market in both Westchester and Fairfield counties, with the primary focus on finding a location where they would realize the highest value in terms of total occupancy cost,” Cahill says. “In the end, Cara was able to lease a space which had an attractive, high-tech exterior with 22-inch high glass window walls, with the benefit of a blank pallet inside to build out their highly specialized space.”

Derek Chalmers, president and CEO of Cara Therapeutics, says the company’s growth necessitates larger accommodations. He adds that Cara needs additional space for its internal drug screening operations as well as its medicinal chemical group. He says the company currently employs 20 people, but within a year will likely grow to about 50 workers. The firm, which is in Phase 2 of clinical trials for its CR665 pain drug candidate, is a privately held biotechnology company that specializes in the development of therapeutics to treat pain and inflammation.

Chalmers says the firm hopes to issue an IPO in the next two to three years.

He notes his firm held talks with economic development officials from Westchester County and from the state’s Empire State Development Corp., but in the end could not find space to meet its needs in New York. He adds that the rental rates for the Shelton space are “considerably lower” than properties the firm had considered in Westchester County.

Although the One Parrott Dr. building did undergo a significant upgrade about two years ago that converted it from a warehouse to a more high-tech building, Chalmers says that the building owner will be contributing a significant portion of the needed build-out to make the space suitable for its needs.

Cara’s space at One Parrott Dr. has been vacant for a considerable period. The firm joins Oce Graphics, which has expanded its presence at the property by another 12,000 sf to 27,000 sf of leased space, and Keno Graphics, which leases approximately 20,000 sf, as tenants of the building.

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