Republic Properties to Develop $190M Life Sciences Facility in Philadelphia

by John Nelson

PHILADELPHIA — Republic Properties Corp., a privately owned real estate investment and management firm, plans to build Ultra Labs at University City, a $190 million life sciences facility in Philadelphia. The property will stand 11 stories tall and comprise 185,000 square feet of advanced research and development space for cell and gene therapy users.

Republic Properties entered into a 90-year ground lease last year with Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority (SEPTA) at the site, which is located adjacent to SEPTA’s Powelton Rail Yard station along North 32nd Street.

Additionally, Ultra Labs at University City will sit within an Opportunity Zone between Powelton and Market streets overlooking the Schuylkill Expressway. The site is within close proximity to life science clusters including The Wistar Institute, University of Pennsylvania, Drexel University and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

The production center will be designed to ensure compliance with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) standards for pharmaceutical and cell production facilities, according to Republic Properties.

The Washington, D.C.-based developer has tapped Maryland-based brokerage firm Scheer Partners to lease the property, which is slated for completion in less than 36 months. Republic Properties’ investment partner on the project is an entity known as PHL Next State Med LLC.

Republic Properties Corp. is a division of the Republic Family of Cos. The privately owned company has developed and invested in real estate transactions valued in excess of $7 billion.

— John Nelson

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