UBC Claims Victory in 18th Annual NAIOPWA Real Estate Challenge

The University of British Columbia bested both Portland State University and the University of Washington to emerge as the victor of the 18th Annual NAIOP Washington State Real Estate Challenge!

Teams evaluated the highest and best use for the Alexandria Real Estate-owned site at 1600 Eastlake, which sits at the center of Alexandria’s Eastlake biotech campus. As the site sponsor for the Challenge, Alexandria tasked students with creating a feasible development proposal that would enhance the surrounding biotech campus, enliven the neighborhood, and adhere to Alexandria’s commitment to sustainability.

Over the nine-week challenge, students met weekly with leading Seattle-area real estate professionals. Students from all three teams dove deep into the unique building requirements for biotech, detailing innovative structural and mechanical systems to maximize usable space, accommodate wet labs, and reduce environmental impacts of development. Thanks to the many NAIOP members who generously shared their time and expertise, student proposals also reflected an impressive understanding of the Eastlake submarket.

UBC’s proposed life science laboratory development, The Synapse, was awarded the Bob Filley Cup trophy! The development was guided by the students’ vision for community connection, integration into Alexandria’s Eastlake campus, and innovation – both in design and suggested future tenants. The project proposed smaller floorplates to appeal to start-ups emerging from the Alexandria Launch Labs incubator, the University of Washington, and the Fred Hutch Research Center. An atrium connection between the proposed building and the neighboring 1616 Eastlake building solidified the site’s relationship to the existing campus, while an artisanal food market was proposed to attract the broader community to the building. Judges were impressed with the students’ creative thinking, attention to detail, and depth of knowledge of a very specialized product type.

UBC’s The Synapse  

Portland State University and University of Washington students exemplified Alexandria’s commitment to sustainability and to the community through their proposed developments, which featured participation in the City of Seattle’s Living Building Pilot Program and a skybridge connection to the existing 1616 Eastlake building, respectively.

NAIOPWA was thoroughly impressed with student proposals this year and would like to extend a special thanks to our sponsors Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Coughlin Porter Lundeen, Hermanson Company, and Madison Marquette, as well as to this year’s judges: Joanna Callahan (Hess Callahan Partners), Joe Polito (Touchstone), and Lori Hill (Unico), who were assisted by Hart Cole (Alexandria Real Estate Equities). 

Thank you to our 2021 Market Experts:

Austin Kates, The Wolff Company

Bill Bieber, Exxel Pacific

Carey Dagliano, NBBJ

Charlie Schwab, The Wolff Company

Conner McQueen, The Wolff Company

John Cox, Alexandria

Josh Nasvik, Polaris Pacific

Logan Greer, JLL

Mark Washington, Eastdil Secured

Nicole De Leon, Cairncross & Hempelmann

Reid Radar, Eastdil Secured

Tiffini Connell, West Coast Commercial Realty

Todd Williams, Exxel Pacific

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