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Liberty Bank fires off $22M for Winchester repositioning

Winchester Partners, a joint-venture of L+M Development Partners, Twining Properties and the Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group, has closed on a $22 million loan for Winchester Works, a 143,000 s/f Class-A technology and life sciences campus in New Haven’s Prospect Hill neighborhood and across the street from Yale’s Science Hill.

The financing, a three-year floating rate loan originated by Liberty Bank to finance the sponsors repositioning plan, was arranged by Greystone Capital Advisors, led by Drew Fletcher and Steven Deck.

“Winchester Works is setting the pace for New Haven’s growing biotech and life sciences community, and this loan will allow us to further strengthen our position in the market,” said Jake Pine, Director at L+M Development Partners. “Laboratory space in New Haven is in significant demand, and we’re ready to welcome tenants right now. Thanks to our partners at Greystone Capital Advisors and Liberty Bank for helping us keep the momentum going at Winchester Works.”

The loan follows the partnership’s recent announcement that biotechnology firm Halda Therapeutics will take 9,800 s/f of laboratory and office space at Winchester Works. Halda plans to relocate to New Haven in the first quarter 2021. Chris Ostop, Managing Director and John Cahill, Senior Vice President at JLL, are the exclusive leasing agents for the Winchester Works campus.

Built in 2012, the 145,000 s/f Class A office building at 115 Munson Street was the first new office building constructed in New Haven in more than 20 years.

The building was formerly part of the Winchester Factory, constructed in 1915 and gut-renovated in 2012 as a Class A Corporate Headquarters. Winchester Office LLC purchased the property in late 2019 and is in the process of preparing the building for life sciences tenants, overhauling the entrance and lobby and revamping the rooftop amenity space.

Bank Mobile, a company which provides college students with digital checking accounts, has taken 34,000 s/f of space, while Transact Campus, a cashless campus technology company, is occupying 12,000 s/f.

The project is the first stage in the Winchester Center master plan, which could eventually include the four remaining buildings and four development sites in Science Park at Yale, all part of New Haven CT’s former Winchester Factory that once employed 25,000 people. Winchester Center could eventually include over 1,000 apartments, retail space and 500,000 square feet of office and lab space.

“As New Haven’s life science industry experiences unprecedented growth, we are excited to reinvent this Class A building into state-of-the-art lab and office space specifically designed for companies in this field,” said Alex Twining, CEO of Twining Properties. “Science Park at Yale has become a unique hub for innovation and discovery, where biotech businesses can grow and thrive. With its new and upgraded facilities, we know that tenants will find what they need to be successful here at Winchester Works.”

“New Haven has evolved into an emerging biotech center, but with that has come a growing need for cutting-edge laboratory and modern office space,” said Drew Fletcher of Greystone Capital Advisors. “We are incredibly excited to have represented Twining, L+M, and Goldman on this project as they continue their push to redefine the landscape of downtown New Haven.”

“Our partnership with Winchester Works and the other project sponsors not only reaffirms our unwavering commitment and our expanding presence in New Haven but it endorses what many of us know when it comes to biotech and life sciences being an important growth sector for the city,” said Jeff Hubbard, Senior Vice President & Commercial Banking Regional Manager for Liberty Bank. “Together, with the strong backing of other project sponsors, our team worked side-by-side in an incredibly difficult time to deliver the resources necessary to create first-class, modern space for biotech and life science tenants while bolstering community development and promoting job growth in the City of New Haven.”

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