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Planning officials to review ‘Colorado’s first net-zero electric building for life sciences’ 

BOULDER — Conscience Bay Co. LLC, a Boulder-based real estate investment and development company, is set to present its plans before the Boulder Planning Commission Tuesday for what it calls a first-of-its-kind green office-laboratory flex space on Walnut Street. 

The project, first introduced in a conceptual form last year, calls for a 112,600-square-foot, two-story facility designed for biotechnology tenants at 3825 Walnut St.

The Ridgeway Science & Technology building, as the project is known, was set for review by Boulder’s Planning Board in mid-August, but a tight schedule resulted in the agenda item being pushed to a special meeting.

“This (will be) Colorado’s first net-zero electric building for life sciences,” Conscience Bay director of development and design Daniel Aizenman told BizWest in advance of the mid-August Planning Board meeting. “… We’re really doubling down on sustainability and going all in.”

With Ridgeway, Conscience Bay is “trying to reimagine the built environment in a warming world,” Aizenman said.

Specifically how the developer plans to achieve net-zero carbon emissions while making the Ridgeway project pencil out remains to be seen. 

Conscience Bay is hoping to break ground in the second or third quarter of 2024, “with the intent of finalizing the building in the second quarter of 2026,” Aizenman said.

Ridgeway will be built speculatively. “We don’t have a specific tenant in mind,” Aizenman said. “We haven’t gone out to market yet with this building; we’re waiting on entitlements to be done.”

The developer is “agnostic (about the specific type of tenants that end up occupying the space),” he said. “This building is prepared to receive any type of tenant in the life-sciences world, in robotics, aerospace, even tech.” 

The space would be flexible for a range or research and development users and could potentially house certain advanced manufacturing tenants. Any manufacturing done in the space would have to be “clean manufacturing,” Aizenman said. “We are not interested in any manufacturing that would exhaust into the neighborhood.”

Ridgeway is “a very technically complex project” in a “campus-like environment,” with special attention expected to be paid to amenities. 

Aizenman said he wants workers there to feel like Ridgeway has the vibe of “resort living, hospitality living within the property.” 

If the building is ultimately leased to several tenants, “we will most likely have a public-facing cafe,” he said. “If we end up with a single tenant to occupy the whole building, it will be completely up to that tenant to do what it wants with the space.”

Conscience Bay’s “portfolio is intentionally diverse,” Aizenman said. “It ranges from office to life sciences to industrial to mixed used and multi-family properties all along the Front Range. We also have working farms and ranches along the Western Slope.”

Source: BizWest