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7 Things You Should Know About Bell Works

On June 15, Bisnow will be hosting its Reinventing New Jersey event at the epitome of reinvention, Somerset Development's Bell Works. Here's what you should know about the $200M redevelopment, which will be a mix of office space, retail, bar/restaurants, healthcare, community services (including a library) and event space.

Inside of Bell Works, Holmdel, NJ
The atrium of the 2M SF Bell Works in Holmdel, N.J.

1) It was once the headquarters for Bell Labs.

The property was originally built between 1962 and 1964, designed by world-famous architect Eero Saarinen (who also designed the TWA terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport and the St. Louis Arch).

2) Seven Nobel Prize winners once worked in the building.

As Bell Labs' headquarters, then later the headquarters for Lucent and Alcatel-Lucent, a total of seven Nobel Prize winners worked in the building—conceiving theories for the laser, the Big Bang theory, cellular technology, the transistor and more.

3) It raked in a lot of tax money for Holmdel.

Throughout much of the 1970s to the 1990s, the property accounted for approximately 20% of Holmdel's taxes.

Somerset Development president Ralph Zucker
Somerset Development president Ralph Zucker

4) Somerset sold a portion of the land.

Its 2013 purchase included the building and 472 acres of land. Somerset (its president, Ralph Zucker, a panelist at our event, above) sold a portion of the land surrounding the perimeter of the building to Toll Brothers, which will be developing the residential component. It will eventually include 40 single-family homes and 185 age-restricted homes.

5) The building is roughly the size of the Empire State Building.

If you put the famous landmark on its side, that is. Bell Works totals six floors and spans about a quarter of a mile, with an atrium or "pedestrian street" running down the middle.

6) It's got a brilliant tenant roster.

Tenants that have already signed leases at Bell Works include: Symbolic IO, a data storage tech startup; Vi Coworking, a collaborative networking hub and co-working space; Acacia Communications, a designer of cloud-based communications services; NVIDIA Corp, which is developing software for autonomous cars; McAnn Systems, which advises businesses on their use of A/V technology; Spirent Communications, which makes equipment that helps engineers test telecommunications systems; and Suttons International, a logistics company.

Inside of Bell Works, Holmdel, NJ

7) It's quite the happening place.

You've seen those YouTube videos of people running around in giant bubbles—well, Bell Works had a Knockerball expo on April 15. Last weekend, it held the Building-STEAM Maker Festival, which brought together the maker community, schools and industry to illustrate innovation, creativity and invention. And on May 25, Holmdel Mayor Eric Hinds—who will also be a panelist at our event—is hosting a career networking event.

Check it out for yourself and see the newest innovations in real estate by signing up for Bisnow's Reinventing New Jersey event June 15 at Bell Works. Breakfast and networking start at 8am, followed by our featured panels. Sign up here!