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Assembly Row lab space latest in ongoing development trend in the Boston area

Developers hope to take advantage of regional life sciences boom with a project in the Somerville enclave

An empty lot next to a low-rise building and near a major highway. Google

Continuing a major trend in Boston-area development, Amsterdam-based developer EDGE announced that it was partnering with Boston Global Investors on a new life sciences/lab-space project in Somerville’s Assembly Row.

The pair has purchased the vacant lot at 74 Middlesex Avenue, and plans to fill it with a commercial building that will include lab space. The developers plan to position the space—and the building in general—to capitalize on the boom in the life sciences industry locally.

“The increased demand for quality office and lab spaces derives from both traditional blue-chip tenants, health and life science companies, and tech and clean-tech startups,” a release from EDGE said.

It’s unclear how big or how tall the project will be—or how much will be lab space—but EDGE says construction could start in early 2021 and last for two years. Kems Corporation, which sold 74 Middlesex, will retain an ownership stake in the project and act as manager on it. EDGE and BGI have already partnered on 401 Congress Street, a 600,000-square-foot office building planned for Boston’s Seaport District.

The Assembly Row project near the Orange Line and Interstate 93 joins a plethora of life sciences projects throughout the Boston region either planned, under construction, or recently finished. They span from from Somerville to Watertown to Somerville (again) to different parts of Boston, including South Boston, Charlestown, the Seaport, and Allston.

EDGE and BGI, too, are swinging for the fences in terms of the future project’s sustainability.

“The new development is expected to become the region’s leading building in terms of sustainability, health and well-being, user-centered design, and smart technologies,” EDGE said in a release. Stay tuned.