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5 Groups Compete For Philadelphia Navy Yard Redevelopment

A bird's-eye rendering of Philadelphia's Navy Yard layout.

The Philadelphia Industrial Development Corp. last week released a list of five semi-finalists to become its partner in the next phase of the redevelopment of the Philadelphia Navy Yard in South Philadelphia.

The proposals include expanding existing life sciences research and development, corporate headquarters, office and commercial uses, and spaces for restaurants and retail, according to PIDC. At PIDC's request, developers are including plans for mixed-use residential buildings to the Navy Yard for the first time. 

The public/private partnership received 35 responses to its request for qualifications issued in September to develop a 109-acre site at the former military base. 

The company picked will replace Liberty Property Development, which is exiting the role it held since 2003 after changing its business model to focus solely on industrial development. Liberty is currently working on the fourth building at WuXi AppTec's complex, its final Naval Yard project. 

"We believe that we have a strong pool of potential partners that will contribute to this next chapter of innovation and development at the Navy Yard and look forward to announcing a new development partner later this year," PIDC Senior Vice President of the Navy Yard Kate McNamara said in a press release. 

The Navy Yard is home to nearly 170 employers, including the headquarters of Urban Outfitters, GSK's North American headquarters, Jefferson Health, various life sciences and technology startups along with U.S. Navy engineering centers and a graduate campus for Penn State University. About 15,000 people work on the property.

Here is a rundown on the shortlisted companies. 

  • Ensemble Real Estate Investments/Mosaic Development Partners: Phoenix-based Ensemble developed the Navy Yard's Marriott hotel and has acquired several properties from Liberty, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports. Ensemble is working with local developer Mosaic Development Partners to pitch PIDC.
  • Gilbane Development Co./Jair Lynch Real Estate Partners: Rhode Island-based Gilbane has projects ranging from student housing to office buildings. Jair Lynch is headquartered in Washington, D.C., and is known for its urban mixed-use projects.
  • Gattuso Development Partners/Synterra Partners/Hoffman & Associates: Gattuso CEO John Gattuso oversaw Liberty's work at the Navy Yard. Synterra and Liberty have partnered on previous Navy Yard projects. Hoffman & Associates of Washington, D.C., develops mixed-use, multifamily, office and retail communities.
  • Trammell Crow: Dalles-based Trammell Crow is the country's largest commercial real estate developer. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary of real estate services firm CBRE.
  • HinesThe Houston-based company is a global developer with a presence in 205 cities in 24 countries.