Dallas County joins biotech boom with $44M lab development

Dallas County is getting in on the Metroplex’s growing biotech boom.

The county is building a 65,000-square-foot bio lab less than a mile from three of the city’s largest hospital systems. The building will cost $44 million, per a filing with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. That comes out to almost $680 per square foot. 

Construction could start by the end of this year and will take about 18 months, according to the filing. Page Southerland Page is the architect.

In April, the county purchased a 1.6-acre plot for the project from TXRE Properties, D Magazine reported. The total cost of the project – the land purchase and development of the building – is expected to be $52 million. The county is using money provided by the American Rescue Plan Act for the project. 

The three-story building will feature a biosafety level 3 lab, which is certified for the study of infectious diseases, like West Nile virus and tuberculosis. The building will also house the Dallas County Health and Human Services Public Health Laboratory, the outlet said. 

The building will be located in the city’s growing biotech district, at 1410 West Mockingbird Lane. That’s less than a mile from UT Southwestern Medical Center, Parkland Hospital and the Children’s Medical Center of Dallas. 

The county’s investment in the life science field comes as the Metroplex makes strides toward becoming a leader in biotech.  

Between 2019 and the second quarter of 2022, the life sciences labor pool in Dallas-Fort Worth jumped 17 percent, according to CBRE. The national growth rate was under 14 percent. In the same period, research and development employment jumped more than 44 percent in the Metroplex, ranking the metro area third nationwide.

Earlier this fall, the Biden administration chose Dallas to be one of three hubs for a new federal health agency, Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health. The hub will be located at Pegasus Park, which is less than two miles from the site of the future Dallas County bio lab. 

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