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UCLA Eyeing Another Life Sciences Buy, This Time Near LAX

5210 Pacific Concourse Drive is currently 43% leased to Siemens, which will vacate completely before the end of the year.

About five months after buying the former Westside Pavillion mall to create a new research center, UCLA plans to buy another life sciences property, this time near Los Angeles International Airport, Bisnow has learned. 

The 170K SF building at 5210 Pacific Concourse Drive is 43% occupied by Siemens, which is slated to vacate completely when its lease ends in October, according to marketing materials for the property. Santa Monica-based Karney Properties is the owner, public records show. 

Though the property is being marketed as a life sciences site and is in use by its tenant for those purposes, it's unclear what UCLA has planned for the building.

UCLA did not respond to a request for comment from Bisnow. However, a March agenda for a subcommittee of the UC Regents board that controls acquisitions and dispositions of the university system's property held a closed-session discussion in late March on the topic Life Science Building and Associated Improvements, Los Angeles Campus: Acquisition. 

UCLA is the top recipient of National Institutes of Health funding in the LA-Orange County region, receiving $2.9B from the NIH between 2019 and 2023, according to Cushman & Wakefield. The purchase would be UCLA's second big life sciences play so far this year, after the university's $700M deal to acquire the Westside Pavilion Mall with plans to redevelop it into a research campus.

Rising two stories, the Pacific Concourse building was renovated in 2020. Karney Properties, which owns the building, has invested more than $9.3M into upgrades to the facility, which features on-site food service, outdoor space and 680 parking stalls, according to a brochure for the property.

Marketing materials for the site also showcase its developable space. The property's zoning allows for the addition of more than 230K SF of new development, enough to accommodate an expansion of the existing building or the addition of a new one. 

It's unclear how much UCLA plans to pay for the site. Karney bought the building from Siemens in 2017 for $53M, public records show.

Whatever UCLA is paying, it will not have to factor in Measure ULA. The property is located in unincorporated LA County's Del Aire neighborhood, so the transaction is not subject to the city's real estate transfer tax.

Ownership is being represented by Newmark in the sale, marketing materials show. Representatives for Karney and Newmark did not respond to requests for comment from Bisnow