MORRISVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) – A $1-billion real-estate project being put together by developers is hoping to cash in on the demand for Biosciences in the area.

The project is still in the early stages of approval but hopes to attract some major biotech firms.

The 109-acre campus in Morrisville will be close to Research Triangle Park, but not located in it.

Even so, developers say it’s going to pull from the same talent pool that would feed RTP and other bioscience firms in the area.

The project is going to occupy 109 acres in Morrisville located near the intersection of McCrimmon Parkway and Airport Boulevard.

When it’s finally built out, it will house not only a million and a half feet of lab and biomanufacturing space but also restaurants and recreation areas according to the developers.

“We are going to take a big step forward with this speculative program,” said Jeff Sheehan of Trinity Capital Partners.

Consumer Investigator Steve Sbraccia asked Sheehan if it was dangerous to build on spec in these economic times.

“It’s a big investment for sure and a measured risk,” said Sheehan.

The project is still going through the approval process with the Town of Morrisville.

Developers are planning to construct about one-third of the project in the first stage.

“Those buildings are a blend of product offerings,” said Sheehan. “Some multi-story lab/R&D buildings as well as biomanufacturing buildings.”

Currently, more than 600 life science companies call this area their home including big names Like Pfizer, LabCorp, and Norvo Nordis.

CBS 17 wanted to know what makes this area so attractive to Bioscience firms.

Real estate analyst Kristine Smith of Cushman Wakefield said it’s a combination of:

  • A solid labor pool
  • This area is one of the world’s largest science clusters (with lots of university research adding to that)
  • Geographic advantages for transportation, climate, and drivable recreation activities

Cushman Wakefield also did a study of the market and says that despite the soft demand for office space in our area, the need for life science facilities continues to grow in the Triangle.

For those trying to get the Morrisville project off the ground, that is all good news.

“We can accommodate younger start-up-type organizations and absolutely expect to attract major nationals,” said Sheehan.

Developers hope to break ground on the project in April or May have phase one completed with-in five years.

They estimate it could take up to eight years to completely build out the project.