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CBRE Life Sciences

CBRE is a global, industry-leading provider of world-class workplace solutions for life
sciences and biotech companies. Whether you are a startup looking for bench space or
an established company looking for your next location, we invite you to connect with us
to discuss your lab, manufacturing, and critical environment requirements.

CBRE’s take on Edmonton Life Sciences

With top-rate facilities, research and development institutions, government-backed
initiatives and robust AI capabilities, the Edmonton Metropolitan Region hosts up to 60%
of Alberta’s life science companies and contributes to 7.5% of the Region’s GDP. The
Region is home to more than a dozen large pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing
firms and institutions, as well as The University of Alberta, which has one of the largest
faculties of pharmacy in Canada and is known for its ability to transfer research into the
marketplace. Edmonton’s Internation Airport is the first airport in Canada to obtain CEIV
certification for pharmaceutical handling through the International Air Transportation
Association. This designation is an example of the coordinated effort in the region which
positions Edmonton not only as a dominant player in research and development, but
also large-scale manufacturing and distribution.

Based on CBRE’s 2023 latest U.S. Life Sciences Outlook, we have identified
valuable real estate trends in the Life Sciences industry and here is what we
are seeing:

Trends in supply & demand:

  • After record years in 2020 and 2021, growth of the U.S. life science industry has
    returned to a more normal pace in 2023, although demand for lab/R&D spaces remains
    well above pre-pandemic levels.
  • CBRE forecasts that total life sciences lab/R&D space may increase by more than 20%
    over the next two years as a record-high amount of new construction is currently
    underway. This likely will push the vacancy rate up moderately.
  • U.S. life sciences laboratory/R&D inventory has grown by 47% over the past five years
    to 181.7 million sq. ft. with a record 40.2 million sq. ft. of new construction currently
  • The total inventory should grow another 22% to more 220 million sq. ft. in the next two

Trends in cost of buying and occupying lab space:

  • Life sciences investment sales volume is down to pre-pandemic levels, but pricing
    remains high, with cap rates at record lows amid robust investor sentiment.
  • Average asking rents for lab/R&D space increased in the second half of last year. In
    some markets, more generous tenant improvement allowances supported higher rents.

Trends in building conversions:

Although there is a record 12.5 million sq. ft. of conversion projects currently under
construction, their share of the total construction pipeline fell to m31% in Q4 2022 from a
high of 43% in Q1 2021.

Outlook for 2023:

  • History suggests the life sciences industry is better positioned than many others to
    weather an economic recession this year.
  • After a surge in life sciences lab/R&D investment sales in 2021, cap rates for these
    assets are beginning to stabilize and should remain favourable compared with other
    property types.
  • While lab/R&D vacancy rates in the top U.S. life sciences markets have begun to rise,
    above-average and steady demand will underpin the sector’s resilience in the year

Want to read more on CBRE’s 2023 U.S. Life Sciences outlook? Click here

Interested in learning about U.S. Life Sciences Research Talent?

Read CBRE’s latest report here.

Reach out to your local CBRE Life Science Contacts:

CBRE Edmonton: Mark Anderson
Vice President
Phone: +1 780 229 4652

CBRE Calgary: John Fisher
Executive Vice President
Phone: +1 403 875 4288

Your search begins here.

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