Baltimore / Real estate / Science

A vacant Frederick building is set to turn into a home for life sciences companies

VaLogic acquired the 75,000-square-foot building, and is planning to add lab and office space.

Life sciences facilities are coming to 7495 New Horizon Way. (Courtesy photo)

The footprint of Maryland’s life sciences sector is continuing to expand with a new facility in Frederick.

VaLogic, LLC acquired a vacant, 75,400-square-foot building at 7495 New Horizon Way, and is planning to outfit it with manufacturing space with enough space for multiple life sciences companies. This will include lab space, cleanrooms, testing areas, wet labs and air controls. It’ll be designed for small to medium-sized firms.

VaLogic cited the area’s concentration of companies bringing innovations involving human organisms as a reason for pursuing the property and its industry focus.

“Based on our experience serving the biotech sector with guidance on designing and operating industry-specific buildings, we see a tremendous amount of opportunity and interest among companies for this niche real estate product, which has only been heightened during the ongoing health crisis,” VaLogic President Bill Robertson said in a statement. “This endeavor leverages our expertise in providing the infrastructure companies need to thrive in the life sciences and biosciences sectors, combined with the tremendous growth that is occurring both nationally and locally.”

In 2020, commercial real estate company JLL said the Baltimore-D.C. region has the fourth-largest cluster of biosciences companies, with suburban Maryland being a key driver. The area’s proximity to federal labs like the National Institutes of Health, military hubs like Fort Detrick and research institutions like Johns Hopkins.

Long clustered near NIH in Montgomery County, the industry is now also growing in Frederick. The city has a base of biosciences companies, including a presence of top industry names like AstraZeneca, Thermo Fisher Scientific and a forthcoming facility from Kite Pharma. When it comes to a comparison with Montgomery County, Robertson sees Frederick “nipping at its heels and closing fast.”

VaLogic purchased the two-story building for $7.7 million. The company then secured a $2.4 million loan administered by Baltimore-based MD Energy Advisors for renovations. Known as a commercial property-assessed clean energy loan (CPACE), the loan is designed to be used toward energy and water infrastructure improvements on a project. For the renovations, the company plans to gut the building down to its masonry block and rebuild it entirely.

Rockville-based Scheer Partners will oversee marketing and leasing.

Built in 1992, the facility was formerly owned by Finmarc Management.

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