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BEDFORD, MA-They arrived on a short-term sublease, but never left, and now burgeoning medical devices firm Insulet Corp. is sticking around Oak Park Drive for a while longer. Focused on the diabetes field, Insulet is committing to all 53,000 sf in one building and securing another 11,000 sf next door.

The firm is renewing and expanding its headquarters operations at 9 Oak Park Dr. and, in a separate deal, is taking a smaller space at 7 Oak Park Dr. for a customer support center. “It is great to see a Massachusetts company succeed and grow here,” DTZ FHO Partners principal Michael Dalton says of the tenant. Dalton joined FHO Partners colleagues Brian Hines and Tom Kent in negotiating both leases on behalf of Insulet.

The DTZ FHO team initially helped Insulet assume the 9 Oak Park Dr. sublease from Corning Inc. in 2004 and, subsequently, strike a direct pact, which was set to expire next year, with building owner William J. Callahan. DTZ FHO last autumn also brokered Insulet’s 14,000-sf lease at a Progress Road building in Bedford. “All three deals are key to our continuing expansion and success,” says Insulet VP Kevin Schmid, praising DTZ FHO for its performance throughout their extended relationship.

David L. Pergola negotiated lease terms for the owner of 9 Oak Park Dr. while Tyler Spring and Tamie Thompson, both with Jones Lang LaSalle, represented Gale International for Insulet’s lease at 7 Oak Park Dr.

The enclave of commercial space is sandwiched between the Middlesex Turnpike and Route 3, just a bit north of Route 128. The area is close enough to that roadway for DTZ FHO Partners to include Bedford as part of the Route 128 Central belt in its suburban market review.

In the latest version of that report, DTZ FHO Partners shows a solid start for Bedford’s flex and office market, estimating 90,000 sf of positive net absorption during the first three months of this year. That compares favorably to negative net absorption of 63,000 sf for Route 128 Central overall in the survey of 39.6 million sf. Bedford had higher absorption than every other community in the submarket and was among just five of the 12 surveyed that was able to register positive absorption for the quarter. The leasing activity helped Bedford drop its vacancy rate from 20.3% to 18.2%.

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