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CAMBRIDGE, MA-A flurry of leases here and in other centers of biomedical office space is keeping the leasing momentum going for companies that specialize in such space. Vertex Pharmaceuticals, for example, has extended its leases through the year 2015 for more than 292,000 square feet at San Diego-based BioMed Realty Trust Inc.’s 40 Erie St. (also known as Vertex’s corporate headquarters) and 200 Sidney St. properties. Vertex leases approximately 685,000 square feet at five BioMed properties, including approximately 604,000 total square feet in Cambridge and 81,000 square feet in San Diego.

At Pasadena, CA-based Alexandria Real Estate Equities Inc., CEO Joel Marcus commented in the REIT’s latest earnings conference call that it has posted positive growth for its 45th quarter in a row with both occupancy and rental rate growth. Alexandria’s portfolio upticked to 95.6% occupied from 95% in the previous quarter despite what was a generally downward trend in occupancy across the portfolios of many if not most office building owners.

Other biomed and life sciences leases signed in the Boston and Cambridge areas recently reported on GlobeSt.com include an Alexandria deal with Makoto Life Sciences Inc., which is moving into 15 DeAngelo Dr. in Bedford, leasing the entire 20,000-square-foot laboratory and office building. The suburban space will become Makoto’s new headquarters with the long-term sublease.

In the life sciences arena, Kowa Company, Ltd.–a Japanese trading company–is leasing the entire 17th floor of the Center for Life Science Boston from BioMed Realty. The center is 700,000 square feet of office and laboratory space in the Longwood Medial Area. The Kowa lease, totaling 24,400 square feet, brings the Center for Life Science Boston to roughly 91% leased.

In the case of the Vertex Pharmaceuticals lease, BioMed points out that the deal was an early renewal that addresses the San Diego-based REIT’s largest single tenant lease expiration in the next five years. BioMed says that with its active approach to leasing and renewals, less than 3% of its mannualized based rents are expiring in 2009 and less than 5% of annualized base rents are expiring in 2010.

BioMed Realty owns or has interests in 112 buildings, located predominantly in the major US life science markets of Boston, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Maryland, Pennsylvania and New York/New Jersey. The company’s portfolio of 10.4 million square feet includes more than 7.3 million square feet in operating properties, plus nearly 1.7 million square feet being repositioned and redeveloped and 1.4 million square feet under construction.

Alexandria’s asset base totals approximately 13.3 million rentable square feet in 160 properties. Of that, approximately 11.7 million square feet is in buildings that are operating or undergoing redevelopment and 1.6 million square feet is in ground-up development.

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