Grubb Properties Welcomes BioLabs to 137 E Franklin Chapel Hill
CHARLOTTE, NC (November 4, 2021) – Grubb Properties is excited to welcome BioLabs to its 137 E Franklin |136 E Rosemary building in downtown Chapel Hill, marking progress in the shared vision for the town’s new innovation district.
Grubb Properties has been working with the Town of Chapel Hill and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on revitalizing downtown by providing improved and attractive office space and needed infrastructure upgrades. Along with the improvements to 137 E Franklin | 136 E Rosemary, Grubb Properties is proposing a new seven-story building with office and laboratory space at 150 E Rosemary, pending successful rezoning of the current site of the Wallace parking deck.
“We believe the development of these types of physical spaces is critical to the creation of an innovation district that will capitalize on Chapel Hill’s potential to cultivate companies that can thrive in the town,” explains Joe Dye, executive vice president of development for Grubb Properties.
Chapel Hill Mayor Pam Hemminger said, "Chapel Hill is fortunate to have the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and UNC Health as strong economic engines for our town. It’s exciting to see that the steps we have taken to reinvigorate commercial office space and infrastructure in our downtown are yielding results. Having year-round employees here will allow us to retain talent, create a more resilient downtown economy and make downtown a more welcoming, exciting place for everyone.”
BioLabs expands its role as the premier local provider of fully-equipped lab and co-working space with a signed lease for the entire third floor, over 21,400 square feet, spanning 137 E Franklin and 136 E Rosemary. The offerings and community of BioLabs reduce the time and capital required to start life science companies. The current BioLabs space in Durham is home to forty of the most promising life science companies in the region. Life science startups from the Durham location have created over 500 jobs and raised over $1 billion in capital since the site opened in 2016.
BioLabs is part of a national network of co-working labs with more than a dozen sites across the country, in cities such as Cambridge, San Francisco, New York, and Philadelphia. The new BioLabs site in Chapel Hill will be an important player in this new district by helping innovators build community and connect with investors, partners, and other resources to accelerate their development and growth.
“We are very excited to bring the BioLabs innovation model to Chapel Hill, in cooperation with the Town, UNC Chapel Hill, Grubb Properties, and other key partners and collaborators,” states Eric Linsley, co-founder of BioLabs. “As a longtime resident of Chapel Hill, I believe BioLabs can be a key contributor to the continued development of the world-class science and research in the ecosystem, yielding broader commercial and economic opportunities for the area.”
Along with top amenities, 137 E Franklin | 136 E Rosemary offers additional benefits to businesses located in the building through its prime location in an Opportunity Zone. Through the Opportunity Zone program’s tax benefits, businesses can have lower cost to access capital – something that is particularly important for start-ups.
“137 E Franklin is the perfect location for innovators and entrepreneurs, not only due to the top minds and resources that Chapel Hill has to offer, but also due to the site’s Opportunity Zone designation,” shares Will Partin, vice president at Grubb Properties. “The ability for companies and investors alike to benefit from the tax advantages of Opportunity Zones can have a significant financial impact, especially in high-growth sectors such as life sciences and biomedical
“BioLabs will enable entrepreneurs to quickly and efficiently progress their research and technology,” says Ed Field, president of BioLabs North Carolina. “We look forward to building on the success in our Durham location, where we are near capacity, and expanding our local footprint to allow the research talent in Chapel Hill to effectively translate their discoveries into commercial enterprises.”
The East Rosemary redevelopment project also includes construction of a new 1,100-space parking deck at 125 East Rosemary, which is underway and expected to be completed in late 2022.
About Grubb Properties
Grubb Properties, founded in 1963, is a vertically integrated real estate fund manager focused on creating exceptional real estate environments. It provides premier customer service for residents in Essential Housing through its Link ApartmentsSM brand, and for tenants through new and reimagined office environments. Grubb Properties maintains a long-term perspective and its careful and measured approach to real estate investment has delivered resilient and impressive returns. Grubb Properties has received numerous sustainability designations and recognitions, and undergoes annual ESG assessments through GRESB. For more information,
Grubb Properties’ CEO Clay Grubb is the author of the book “Creating the Urban Dream: Tackling the Affordable Housing Crisis with Compassion.”
BioLabs is a unique wet lab co-working facility that is equipped with top-of-the-line research equipment, with additional services to help resident companies reach their milestones faster. Our aim is to attract the most ambitious startup companies in life sciences. The initial location in downtown Durham, North Carolina, has been a launching pad for promising startups such as Element Genomics (acquired by UCB), StrideBio, Ribometrix, OerthBio and Phitonex (acquired by ThermoFischer).
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