First it was Google. Now Carnegie Mellon University's Software Engineering Institute is headed to Bakery Square in the East End.
The federally funded research and development center is expanding by renting about 38,000 square feet in the mixed-use development in Larimer. With the move, all 260,000 square feet of office space in the former Nabisco plant has been taken.
In a statement announcing the lease, Paul Nielsen, the institute's director and CEO, said its headquarters will remain in Oakland near the CMU campus. He added the new space "will help us prepare for the anticipated growth of our programs in software engineering and cybersecurity."
The institute will join Google, the UPMC Technology Development Center, the University of Pittsburgh Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology and the VA Human Engineering Research Laboratories at Bakery Square.
"It's just an amazing line-up of tenants," said Gregg Perelman, CEO for developer Walnut Capital.
Walnut Capital hopes to have the space ready for the institute by the spring. The developer will be responsible for building out the space, but Mr. Perelman did not have an estimate on the cost of doing so.
Mr. Perelman said Walnut Capital had been talking to CMU for a while about expanding the Software Engineering Institute to Bakery Square. Google moved its offices from the CMU campus to Bakery Square in 2010 and already has expanded there. It now has about 130,000 square feet of space in the complex.
Walnut Capital is planning an additional 400,000 square feet of office space across the street from Bakery Square at the site of the former Reizenstein school. The project, which also will include housing, has been dubbed Bakery Square 2.0. Mr. Perelman believes the Software Engineering Institute expansion will create enough momentum to help in the leasing of the 400,000 square feet of office space planned in the new development.
"We think we've created an amazing campus environment for people," he said. "People want to be around other people in the same type of high tech, software [environment]."
Construction of Bakery Square 2.0 is expected to begin in January, with occupancy by the summer of 2014.
Mark Belko: email@example.com or 412-263-1262.