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CAMBRIDGE, MA-Pharmaceutical maker Microbia Inc. will move into 100,000 sf of lab space in January 2008 under an eight-year lease arrangement. The company will be the first tenant in the 420,000-sf Cambridge building now under construction by Lyme Properties.

David Clem, managing partner with the Hanover, NH-based developer, tells GlobeSt.com that the space at 301 Binney St. will be in addition to the 45,000 sf Microbia now occupies in another Lyme property located next door at 320 Bent St. Microbia shares that location with biotech giant Schering Plough.

Terms of the lease were not disclosed but Clem said the rapidly shrinking availability of first class lab space in the Cambridge market has driven up rents in the area to more than $60 per sf.

Lyme Properties, one of the largest developers of class A life science space in New England, began construction on the building earlier this year. Completion is scheduled for August 2007. Lyme also is expected to begin developing another 300,000 sf of life science space at 650 Kendall St. in Cambridge soon.

Clem says Lyme tried to time the construction of the Binney Street building to coincide with Microbia’s expansion plans. The firm has been in the Bent Street property for about four years.

“Obviously, a tenant working hard to reach research milestones can ill afford the cost of relocation and Microbia was well aware of that when they moved into 320 [Bent St.] four years ago,” he notes. “I think that was an important consideration when they took the lease.”

Other biotech firms in Cambridge, including Novartis, the city’s largest tenant, also have expansion plans for the future. The growth of the area’s biotech firms has tightened up the metro area’s lab market and forced many life science firms to look for space in Boston’s inner suburbs.

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