Plans for a recently approved research facility will offer a new opportunity for life sciences companies in “Einstein’s Alley” in Mercer County.

Located within West Windsor’s Roszel Square, a joint venture of Mountain Development Corp. and Gottesman Real Estate Partners announced the forthcoming, 38,000-square-foot research facility March 27. The project is being offered as a build-to-suit, fully customizable property for life sciences firms looking to launch or expand their lab and clinical capabilities.

Princeton Property Partners serves as lead broker for the project, according to the announcement, which marks the second building in the market the Mountain-Gottesman JV will develop together. One needn’t look far to find the pair’s previous endeavor: a 60,000-square-foot Class A office building located on the same Roszel Square parcel at 21 Roszel Road. Occupied by lead tenant Hill Wallack LLP, that project is fully leased.

The property at 19 Roszel Road was previously approved for a three-story office building.

Rendering for 19 Roszel Road, a build-to-suite life sciences R&D opportunity from Mountain Development Corp. and Gottesman Real Estate Partners located in Einstein’s Alley in Central New Jersey. – PRINCETON PROPERTY PARTNERS
“This is a significant new project that global life sciences companies can take advantage of to enhance and grow their medicine or device research activities and accelerate the pipeline of breakthrough discoveries to meet patient health needs and do so in one of the most recognized and prestigious markets in the world,” said Michael Seeve, president of Mountain Development Corp., in a statement.

According to a recent study from Colliers, New Jersey is home to eight of the top 10 R&D companies, as the Garden State’s life sciences market experiences rapid growth. The 2023 Life Sciences Report pegged the state’s vacancy rate at 5.6% as of the Fourth Quarter of 2022, with expansions from small and mid-sized firms keeping availability low during the preceding year. With the market for move-in ready lab space described as “tight,” the new Roszel Square project could help to satisfy market needs.

In West Windsor, organizations have the opportunity to become the sole tenant of the entire space at 19 Roszel Road, with full control of the property from lobby to labs. The joint venture is also offering the option for a lead tenant – at 19,000 square feet – to be granted building naming and branding rights. Either way, the facility can be constructed on a customizable basis.

Construction on the development will begin once a full-building or lead tenant is secured. According to a representative, the project will take a year to complete, including both core and shell as well as interiors.

Located within the Princeton Route 1 Corridor, and easily accessible to that highway, the two-story development will be designed with contemporary elements specific to the needs of lab R&D, the announcement said, including lab-level HVAC systems, 16-foot ceiling heights, a freight elevator and service corridor, loading dock, heavy power and floor loads, and a back-up generator for critical functions.

Roszel Square is a five-minute drive from downtown Princeton and near the Princeton Junction train station.

Looking ahead, the Collier’s report projects the New Jersey life sciences market will see increased demand, rents (which, as of Q4, were an average triple-net asking price of $45 rent per square foot per year), and new supply over the course of 2023, with proposed space adding up to 4.1 million square feet.