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Nuveen Real Estate and Taconic Partners Complete Successful $600M Recapitalization for State-of-the-Art Life Sciences Hub at 125 West End Avenue in New York

Nuveen Real Estate and Taconic Partners completed a $600 million capitalization of 125 West End Avenue, New York City’s newest life sciences building on Manhattan’s West Side.

COVID-19 has highlighted the importance of expanding U.S. healthcare research and development infrastructure. New York City is home to some of the largest medical research institutions in the world, employs more biomedical engineers, biochemists and biophysicists than any other city in the U.S., and receives notably higher levels of federal, state and VC funding. Despite adverse market conditions brought on by the pandemic, New York’s life science sector has seen heightened demand and significant rent growth.

"Life sciences is a sector that continues to evolve and show promise and together with Taconic, we will address the lack of supply of lab space in the market with confidence in our team and in the strength and resiliency of New York City,” said Nadir Settles, Head of the New York Investments and Life Science for Nuveen Real Estate. 

Construction on the property commenced in February and will involve a comprehensive renovation of the building including a new robust mechanical plant with purpose-built lab infrastructure, a new high-performance façade, a roof terrace, conference center, and dramatic new lobby. Construction is expected to be complete in 2023. 

Originally constructed by the Chrysler Corporation as an automotive showroom, 125 West End Avenue is an eight-story, 400,000-square-foot building featuring large floorplates, ceiling heights of up to 16 feet, Hudson River views, heavy floor loads and multiple access points. In late 2019, Nuveen Real Estate and Taconic Partners purchased the property, which until recently was occupied by ABC/Disney as part of their NYC headquarters. “Re-using an existing site for a purpose other than it was designed for supports our long history of sustainable real estate development in New York City and globally,” adds Settles. 

“The transformation of 125 West End Avenue into a state-of-the-art life science hub and our recapitalization of this project is a testament to the resilience of New York City and the promise of this emergent sector,” said Chris Balestra, President and Chief Investment Officer of Taconic. “We are pleased to be working with our partners to realize this project—the largest of its kind to move forward since COVID-19 impacted our great city.”

LaSalle Investment Management, on behalf of its underlying limited partner, has joined as an equity partner in a new joint venture to execute the project, which will also be supported by a $393 million construction financing from funds managed by Apollo Global Management, Inc. and Oaktree Capital Finance. The project design team is led by architect Perkins+Will New York and engineering firm JB&B. JRM Construction has been engaged as construction manager.

 
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