Chan Zuckerberg Initiative Signs New Lease in Redwood City

JANUARY 25, 2017

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative has leased 102,079 square feet in a new project in Redwood City, in one of the largest office deals signed last year in the Peninsula.

The philanthropic organization founded by Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan took the full four stories of office space at 2075 Broadway. The project also has about 12,000 square feet of retail on the ground floor. Menlo Park based Lane Partners, which is know for selling the Uptown Station project in Oakland to Uber Technologies in 2015, is developing the building.

“We’ve had a ton of interest in retail and a lot of interest in the office portion,” Scott Smithers, managing principal of Lane Partners, told the Business Times in July as he was working to lease up the property. Smithers declined to comment further on the deal.

Construction is set to begin in June and take 20 months.

“The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is leasing additional space as part of our plans to build for the future, and we are committed to working in our community. We are pleased to strengthen our roots in the Bay Area and look forward to many years of work to unlock human potential and promote equal opportunity,” said a spokesperson for the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative in a statement.

It wasn’t clear what the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative’s rent was. The average annual asking rent in Redwood City was $57 per square foot in the fourth quarter, according to brokerage Kidder Mathews. Another new project, Dostart Development’s 601 Marshall St., had asking rents of $78 per square foot. Law firm Goodwin Procter LLP recently leased over 100,000 square feet of that 133,000-square-foot project.

Redwood City’s office vacancy rate was 3.7 percent in the fourth quarter, one of the lowest levels in San Mateo county, according to Kidder Mathews Lane Partners confirmed the lease and declined to comment further.

Korth Sunseri Hagey Architects designed the project. Brokers Mike Moran and Brad Altick of Cushman & Wakefield represented the landlord in the lease.

Founded in 2015, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative expanded last year, with Chan and Zuckerberg dedicating $3 billion in a goal to cure all diseases. It is also operating the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub in San Francisco’s Mission Bay neighborhood at 499 Illinois St. and made its first acquisition this week, buying Meta, a Canadian artificial intelligence start-up.

Lane Partners sold an office project at 1020 Alma St. in Menlo Park last year, but still has multiple towers proposed in Oakland.

As part of construction, the existing Powerhouse Gym on the site will be relocated to 870 Jefferson St., according to the San Mateo Daily Journal, which earlier reported the lease.