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CAPE CANAVERAL, FLA. — The groundbreaking has occurred for a new 199-acre high-tech office park at the entrance to Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral. Exploration Park is being developed in two phases by Columbus, Ohio-based The Pizzutti Companies. The first phase will comprise 60 acres of the project. Once built out, it could contain up to eight buildings with up to 315,000 square feet of office, R&D, laboratory, academic and flexible high-bay space. This phase is projected to be built out over the next 5 to 8 years, with current construction consisting of the installation of public infrastructure, which will be complete next September. Phase II of construction will consist of the long-term development of the other 139 acres.

“What's unique about this project is that it is on Space Center property but is just outside of the security gates,” says Tom Harmer, senior vice president with Pizzutti. He adds that this allows more flexibility for tenants, since you have access to the Space Center but do not have to go through the heavy security associated with being inside the gates.

The existing Space Life Sciences Lab will serve as the project's de facto first building. The 100,000-square-foot building is currently located inside the Space Center's security gates but is being moved outside of the Center to be clustered with Exploration Park. Pizzutti is negotiating with five tenants for spaces between 5,000 and 50,000 square feet as has letters of intent signed with them, but the developer is still working out lease details.

Exploration Park is being constructed as a public-private partnership. The project is located on federal land but is being land leased to Space Florida, a partnership between the federal government and the state of Florida. Pizzutti was selected by Space Florida to serve as master developer.

— Coleman Wood

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