~ Easterly’s Third and Largest FDA Laboratory Development Project ~
Easterly Government Properties, Inc. (DEA) (“Easterly”), a fully integrated real estate investment trust focused primarily on the acquisition, development and management of Class A commercial properties leased to the U.S. Government, announced today that it has been awarded a 20 year non-cancelable lease for a 162,000-square foot Food and Drug Administration (FDA) laboratory in Atlanta, Georgia (“FDA - Atlanta”).
The FDA is the federal agency responsible for protecting and promoting the health and safety of the American public by ensuring the safety, efficacy and security of human and veterinary drugs, our nation’s food supply, biological products, medical devices, and other products including cosmetics. Given its mission, the FDA plays a significant role in our nation’s counterterrorism capabilities by ensuring the security of the food supply and by fostering development of medical products to respond to deliberate and naturally emerging public health threats.
“We are pleased to be awarded this significant and highly technical laboratory project,” said William C. Trimble, III, Easterly’s Chief Executive Officer. “Our ability to win the lease award is reflective of our team’s proven experience and strong reputation in partnership with the U.S. Government. We are focused on meeting the specific needs of both the FDA and GSA to deliver this state-of-the-art facility with its brand new, non-cancelable 20-year lease.”
“By winning this award, the Company expects to be on track to deliver a new build-to-suit facility to the United States Government in 2019, 2020 and the 2021-22 timeframe,” said Meghan Baivier, Easterly’s Chief Financial and Chief Operating Officer. “By applying our expertise, we are able to deploy our capital in the most attractive way for investors and extend the weighted average remaining lease term of our portfolio.”
With this lease award, Easterly now has three active development projects totaling approximately 291,000 square feet, all for the beneficial use of the FDA.
The FDA is a science-based, science-led organization, the success of which often depends on the ability of the agency's laboratories to quickly and accurately analyze samples and report results for regulatory action. The agency operates 13 high throughput field laboratories, located strategically across the country.
As one of these 13 field laboratories, FDA - Atlanta will house both laboratory and office space for the Atlanta District Office as well as the Southeast Food and Feed Laboratory (SFFL) and Southeast Tobacco Laboratory (STL). The Atlanta District Office oversees the regulatory operations within the Atlanta region, while the SFFL provides laboratory testing and regulation for the region, as well as research into new methodologies and regulatory areas within the FDA. The FDA Atlanta region covers operations in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Tennessee, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico.
The state-of-the-art facility will house four separate laboratories for nutritional analysis, chemistry, microbiology and tobacco. The facility will be designed to meet the requirements of the National Institutes of Health Design Requirements Manual (NIH DRM) whereby the building systems will be designed specifically for important FDA functions.
The future laboratory will be located on the grounds of the former Fort McPherson U.S. Army base, which is now part of a large-scale master redevelopment plan. This approximately 145-acre redevelopment site is on the cusp of a meaningful transformation, which is expected to offer mixed-use development - including housing, Class A office, retail, and hospitality venues - for a transit-oriented community. The approximately 350 FDA employees and contractors are expected to benefit from the laboratory’s proximity to Atlanta’s mass transit system, the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA).
About Easterly Government Properties, Inc.
Easterly Government Properties, Inc. (DEA) is based in Washington, D.C., and focuses primarily on the acquisition, development and management of Class A commercial properties that are leased to the U.S. Government. Easterly’s experienced management team brings specialized insight into the strategy and needs of mission-critical U.S. Government agencies for properties leased primarily through the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA). For further information on the company and its properties, please visit www.easterlyreit.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of federal securities laws and regulations. These forward-looking statements are identified by their use of terms and phrases such as “believe,” “expect,” “intend,” “project,” “anticipate,” “position,” and other similar terms and phrases, including references to assumptions and forecasts of future results. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results to differ materially from those anticipated at the time the forward-looking statements are made. These risks include, but are not limited to those risks and uncertainties associated with our business described from time to time in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our Annual Report on Form 10-K filed on February 28, 2019. Although we believe the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based upon reasonable assumptions, we can give no assurance that the expectations will be attained or that any deviation will not be material. All information in this release is as of the date of this release, and we undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statement to conform the statement to actual results or changes in our expectations.