Breakthrough Properties has revealed its plans to commence construction for Vitrum, a life sciences building within the 21-acre St John’s Innovation Park in Cambridge, England, UK.  

Breakthrough is a joint venture between Tishman Speyer and Bellco Capital. 

Work on the project will move forward after obtaining a £104m ($131.62m) construction loan from BGO and necessary planning permissions. 

Breakthrough is set to transform the 1.8-acre site into a flexible, high-performance laboratory space.  

The five-storey, 175,000ft² facility, designed in collaboration with Henning Larsen, aims to cater to a variety of scientific research activities with its adaptable structure. 

Vitrum by Breakthrough aims to prioritise on-site biodiversity with a focus on ‘nature as a workplace’. 

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It will operate without fossil fuels, using all-electrical heating and cooling systems.  

The development will incorporate passive design strategies and water consumption reduction to enhance climate resilience and mitigate urban heat island effects. 

Breakthrough Acquisitions and Development senior vice-president Tom Renn said: “With Vitrum by Breakthrough, we are creating a cutting-edge environment for biotechnology companies that rely on modern, flexible lab spaces to advance life-changing scientific discovery.” 

Breakthrough is targeting Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology (BREEAM) Excellent certification, as well as BREEAM Outstanding certification for the project. 

The development marks Breakthrough’s third European project to commence within the past year.  

Other projects include a life sciences building at Amsterdam University Medical Center, and Trinity by Breakthrough, a 210,000ft² research and development building in Oxford, England, UK.