Seven-story building planned in downtown Durham as a major development expands

·2 min read

A new seven-story building is coming to downtown Durham as the second phase of one of the largest commercial developments in the area.

The addition, currently titled “C4,” will be a seven-story office and lab building in the Durham Innovation District, a pair of office mid-rises at the intersection of Hunt and Morris streets, owned and developed by Longfellow Real Estate Partners.

The firm, which has offices in California, Massachusetts and North Carolina, specializes in developing lab and office space.

Longfellow recently filed plans with the city for a building of around 175,000 square feet at 215 Morris Street and 519 W. Morgan Street, which is across from the Durham ID buildings.

“As the Innovation District and Research Triangle continues to grow and attract top companies like Google and Apple, this area will draw even more top talent to the area because of these noteworthy additions,” said Jessica Brock, a Longfellow real estate operations partner, in an email to The News & Observer.

Brock said C4 will be the first urban lab building in the Durham market constructed to spec. No tenants are confirmed yet, and the building will also house retail tenants in the future.

“The location of the Durham Innovation District is intentionally interwoven with the continued growth of the City of Durham, Duke University, and all of the assets that make this area such a driver for the local economy and regional attraction,” Brock said.

It will be built next to the current historic Imperial Building, which was built in 1916 and belonged to the Imperial Tobacco Company. It’s planned to be completed in 2023.

Current ID tenants include the firm itself and the Duke Clinical Research Institute. Duke subleased its office space to Google at 200 Morris St. for the next three years while Google looks for a permanent office in Durham for its future relocation.

Google will have up to 500 employees in the Bull City by 2023, The N&O reported previously.

Additional development will follow this seven-story building expansion, Brock said. The Durham ID development will total up to 1.8 million square feet of mixed-use space across 27 acres downtown.

“The Triangle in North Carolina is a key part of Longfellow’s national portfolio, and we have shown that commitment through continued investments over the past several years,” Longfellow said in an emailed statement.

Longfellow is also developing more than 200,000 square feet of lab and office space in the Hub RTP project at Research Triangle Park, the firm announced in late August.

Last summer, Longfellow paid $138 million to its development partner Bain Capital for the full ownership of the Durham ID buildings — the biggest commercial real estate transaction recorded in the third quarter of 2020.

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