Friday, Oct 12, 1990
South San Francisco, Calif. -- October 12, 1990 --Just up the hill from where its first biotechnology laboratory was created in a corner of a warehouse, Genentech, Inc. will build a new $75 million Genentech Research Center on an eight-acre site. The three-building center, which will rank among the largest commercial or academic biotechnology research centers, will house Genentech's research staff and is scheduled to be completed in mid-1992.
It is the largest single construction project ever undertaken by Genentech and the first major project announced since Roche Holding Ltd. completed its 60 percent equity investment in Genentech on September 7. Following Roche's investment, Genentech has more than $600 million in cash.
"Our new Genentech Research Center is an affirmation that science continues to be our most important priority," said G. Kirk Raab, president and chief executive officer. "This new research center will better enable us to continue our leading role in biotechnology drug discovery and confirms that our future will be in South San Francisco."
The new research buildings are designed to blend with the Genentech campus, which consists of eleven existing buildings spread over approximately 72 acres on the edge of San Francisco Bay. Except for its sales force, all of Genentech's U.S. operations and employees are located in South San Francisco. The most recent major additions to its campus were commercial manufacturing and quality control laboratories, built from 1987 to 1989.
The new buildings, each of which will have three floors of research laboratories, will be interconnected with elevated walkways and share a common outdoor courtyard, the focal point of the center. The new buildings will total 225,000 square feet and can accommodate 420 persons when complete. Two floors of the three-building center will remain unfinished for future expansion. Additional expansion also is possible on the 24 acres Genentech owns at the site, of which only eight acres will be used for this project.
The design for the new facility integrates building and parking functions with the rugged bay-front topography. The buildings will blend with the natural slope of the land and are directed toward San Francisco Bay. Landscaping will be designed to enhance the natural site conditions and enable the buildings to fit into the natural setting. Approximately 50 percent of the eight-acre site is devoted to landscaped areas, 25 percent for parking and 25 percent for buildings.
One of the principal goals of the design is to establish an informal style, which facilitates collaboration between research departments and maintains the Genentech corporate culture. Natural light is a prominent feature throughout the new buildings and it is included in nearly all laboratory suites and offices.
All Genentech employees have been invited to groundbreaking ceremonies for the project, which will be held this afternoon (10/12) as part of one of Genentech's traditional Friday employee gatherings, known as Ho-Ho's. Site preparation work began earlier this month.
The SRG Partnership of Portland, Oregon is the principal architectural design firm; MPA Design of San Francisco is the landscape architect; Brian, Kangas and Foulk of Redwood City, California is the civil engineering firm; laboratory planning is by VDK Architects of San Francisco; construction is by Rudolph & Sletten, Inc. of Foster City, Calif., and engineering of building systems is by Affiliated Engineers, Inc. of Madison, Wis.
Genentech, Inc. is a leading biotechnology company focusing on the development, manufacture and marketing of pharmaceuticals produced by recombinant DNA technology.
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