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ANDOVER, MA-Aiming to take advantage of a diversifying tenant base–and one chock full of startup enterprises upon which it thrives–the Regus Group has landed in this submarket north of Boston. The 19,000-sf office is located on the second floor of 300 Brickstone Square, the largest of a three-building complex owned by Transwestern Investment Co.

Touted as the world’s leading provider of temporary workspace, Regus now has more than 950 offices in 70 countries, but had not previously ventured into the corridor linking interstates 93 and 495. Founded on technology-based companies, the I-495 North real estate market was battered during the high-tech bust that crushed suburban Boston for several years this decade, but regional vice president Jeff Doughman says the area has recovered well. Not only is the technology sector on the mend, the addition of new industries such as defense and medical devices are providing a broader base, according to the Regus official.

“Andover is home to hundreds of companies in the financial services, legal and technology industries, just to name a few,” Doughman says. The company targeted Andover in response to customer demand, he says, maintaining that companies are drawn by a skilled labor force and proximity to both Downtown Boston and southern New Hampshire. Although entrepreneurs are expected to help fill the 68 suites being offered at Brickstone Square, Doughman predicts many of the Fortune 500 companies prevalent in the market will also utilize the venture’s services. A board room and video-conferencing studio will be available for clients.

One reason cited for the Brickstone selection was the range of amenities available to tenants, Doughman says. The complex has 3,000 parking spaces, landscaped courtyards, a day-care center and 564-seat cafeteria. The park is equally happy to have the firm on board so much so that Brickstone brokers Matt Daniels and Chris Lawrence initiated contact with Regus earlier this year. Not only does Daniels feel the firm’s pedigree as a global company enhances the park, he anticipates a side benefit of introducing prospective tenants to the Chicago-based owner of Brickstone Square. “It’s a good feeder system for us going forward,” explains Daniels, a senior vice president with Meredith & Grew in Boston.

The opening of the Regus office comes at a time of solid activity for I-495 North, Daniels reports. “It’s not frenzied, but it is consistent and we are seeing some good growth from our tenants,” he adds.

Besides internal expansion, Andover and surrounding communities along I-93 and I-495 are benefiting from firms stirred by sharply rising rents just to the south on Route 128, with both Burlington and Woburn doing deals in the $30-per-sf range for top addresses. Brickstone, by comparison, is offering space in the low $20 per sf range. “That’s a delta we haven’t seen before,” Daniels says, leading firms to mull alternatives.

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