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Midtown Phoenix life sciences sector blossoms at burgeoning Park Central

Pictured above is what was originally envisaged at the Arizona-based GLHN Architects and Engineers with a design toward the key elements of the study of life sciences. (File Photos/
Staff Reports
Digital Free Press

A life sciences boom continues to matriculate to midtown Phoenix, making healthcare and bioscience among the fastest-growing industries in the greater Phoenix marketplace — and Park Central is at the heart of it, with plans for a new life sciences hub on site.

The project’s development team has offered conceptual design for an 80,000-square-foot, life sciences facility in the project’s Burgbacher Building, the largest of the original buildings on site, according to a press release.

The hub can be divisible into separate life sciences laboratories ranging from 5,000 to 50,000 square feet.

The new facility will have the capacity to accommodate 40 lab modules and 28 support lab modules. The architecture of the structure allows lab users maximum flexibility and the building boasts 6,000 amperage of service. With high 16-foot ceilings, the ability for advanced air conditioning systems, and exhaust penetrations will enhance the experience for today’s life science companies, proponents of the project contend.

A brief architectural dive

Arizona based GLHN Architects and Engineers has designed the key elements of the life sciences facility.

We are seeing central and downtown Phoenix emerge as one of the true life sciences hubs in the western United States,” said Sharon Harper, chairman and CEO of Plaza Companies, co-owner and co-developer of Park Central. “This new life sciences hub will create synergies with the many healthcare related entities already at Park Central and nearby, and will be a tremendous opportunity for innovative companies to find an ideal location.”

Plaza Companies and Tucson’s Holualoa Companies have teamed up to redevelop Park Central into a vibrant destination, which once was the city’s first official large-scale shopping mall, the release states.

Park Central is already home to Creighton University’s new $100 million Health Sciences Campus, as well as Dignity Health’s headquarters. Next door is the prestigious St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, and a short distance away is Banner Health System’s headquarters.

About two miles to the south is the 30-acre Phoenix Biomedical Campus, where all three major Arizona public universities — Arizona State University, University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University — along with the Dignity Health Cancer Institute at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, the Translational Genomics Research Institute an affiliate of City of Hope and Exact Sciences are a few of its tenants, the release states.

A view of Park Central, which is found where locals ‘midtown Phoenix.’ (File Photos/

More than meets the eye at Park Central

WearTech Applied Research Center, a medical device lab bringing breakthrough wearable health and performance technology to market has already taken residence at Park Central, officials there say.

The center connects entrepreneurs and companies seeking to commercialize emerging healthcare technology with world-class research teams working at the forefront of wearable, biomedical innovation.
Park Central is home to a new facility for West Coast Ultrasound Institute as well.

Stan Shafer, COO of Holualoa Companies, said that the new life sciences hub will continue the extensive momentum experienced at Park Central the past few years.

“We continue to be pleased with the growth and evolution of Park Central into a true hub for many different industries and specialties,” he said. “From healthcare to education to retail to hospitality, Park Central is becoming more dynamic as a mixed-use destination with each new advancement.”

The new Park Central includes 450,000 square feet of Class A, low-rise office space available for lease with the ability to accommodate tenants ranging from 3,500 square feet to more than 100,000 square feet in size.

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