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Alexandria Buys Allston TV Studio Site With Development Plans

A rendering of the approved 700K SF project at the WBZ-TV studio site in Allston.

Alexandria Real Estate Equities acquired the WBZ-TV studio property in Allston that has been approved for a new mixed-use development. 

The country's largest life sciences REIT acquired the site at 1200 Soldiers Field Road for $7M from Mount Vernon Co., according to public records. The buyer will partner with National Development to develop the site, Banker & Tradesman first reported.

National Development and Mount Vernon received approval in December 2020 for a project that would demolish the television studio and build a mixed-use development, including 700K SF of office and lab space and an 85-unit apartment building. 

The developers also plan to build WBZ a new 62K SF studio on another section of the property. 

Mount Vernon acquired the site in 2017 for $3.8M. Alexandria and National Development didn't respond to Bisnow's request for comment.

The deal is the REIT's second acquisition in the city this year, following a $43M purchase of a Dorchester Avenue property in South Boston.

However, those deals come amid a selling spree from Alexandria, including three industrial properties in Southie, an office building in Andover and two life sciences buildings in Waltham and Cambridge.

The Allston-Brighton neighborhood has benefited from a wave of development in recent years, including Mount Vernon Co.'s investments on Western Avenue and Leo Birmingham Parkway. There has also been a flurry of life sciences development.

Harvard University and Tishman Speyer have begun construction on the first phase of the university's Enterprise Research Campus, a 900K SF mixed-use project that includes 510K SF of lab space. IQHQ has proposed two projects in the area, including the redevelopment of the popular rehearsal space and recording studio Sound Museum