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CBRE's Curtis Cole and Adam Brinch and Cambridge Chamber of Commerce?s Kelly Thompson Clark
We snapped the panelists: CBRE's Curtis Cole and Adam Brinch and Cambridge Chamber of Commerce?s Kelly Thompson Clark. Overall, the city had its most active quarter since 2Q07. The office vacancy rate fell to 10.4% from a recent high in 3Q05 of just over 15%; net absorption was up 102k SF compared to net negative 525k SF for '09. An average asking rent PSF of $35.06 signals stabilization in some submarkets and shrinking landlord concessions. The lab vacancy is 13.5%, and for the fourth consecutive quarter net absorption was positive, this time at 69k SF. The average asking rent PSF rose to $51.05 (NNN), new development is limited, and 210% more tenants are in the market than a year ago.
Tom Andrews
We snapped Tom Andrews after he spoke on the panel recounting life science?s growth to occupy 8.8m SF. Biotech?s ?big march through Cambridge? took off in the 90?s and in ?02 Novartis put the city on the map as it relocated its global research center. Now, there are 93 life science companies leasing lab/office space, more than anywhere else ?in the universe,? Tom says. In recent years, Big Pharma has joined in and when they settle somewhere, they rarely shut down operations. Tom says these firms are attracted by the excellent science, healthcare, and medical talent, and top tier venture funding and abundant NIH grants—$2.8B last year.
Google?s Steve Vinter
Google?s Steve Vinter explains how high tech has exploded in Cambridge over the past 11 years. The city boasts ?phenomenal talent? not only in depth but also breadth, with people able to do all sorts of jobs. ?The problem is we're losing talent to other locations.? What Google looks for are "kids getting out of college with PhD?s, MAs, and BAs." But he says Google is growing in Cambridge because it's a global tech hub that gives employees the chance to build a great career and have fun after hours.