Sterling Bay, Harrison Street Close on $265MM Construction Loan for First Phase of Pacific Center Life Science Development in Sorrento Mesa

Sterling Bay, Harrison Street, Pacific Center, San Diego, Sorrento Mesa, Bank OZK, Gensler
Courtesy of Gensler

SAN DIEGO –– National real estate investment and development firm Sterling Bay and its co-development partner Harrison Street, a leading real estate investment firm specializing in alternative assets, are proud to announce the successful closing of a $265M construction loan from Bank OZK on Pacific Center, a new life sciences campus being developed in various phases over the next four years in San Diego’s Sorrento Mesa submarket.

The construction loan enables Sterling Bay and Harrison Street to commence development on the first phase of Pacific Center, bringing 500,000-rentable-square-feet of brand-new, state-of-the-art scientific research space, a 28,000-square-foot amenity center and a 1,700-space parking facility to San Diego’s leading innovation district. Leadership teammates from Sterling Bay, Harrison Street, and various firms involved in the project celebrated the official start of construction yesterday, hosting a traditional groundbreaking at the site of the future project.

“Securing a loan for new construction in today’s economic climate is no small feat, which speaks to the confidence our finance partners have in Sterling Bay and Harrison Street’s unique approach to developing next-generation lab space,” said Andy Gloor, CEO of Sterling Bay. “San Diego’s life sciences ecosystem is thriving, and the demand for modern, highly amenitized research space is at critical max – we’re proud to provide facilities where brilliant innovation will take place while supporting the growth of critically important, life-saving industries along the way.”

Designed by Gensler to meet the evolving needs of the life sciences industry, this $650M campus will catalyze the discovery of life-saving therapeutic advancements. Totaling five structures, Pacific Center includes three lab buildings that will frame a central plaza and mass-timber amenity center, and a parking structure. The amenity center will provide a multi-functional destination for tenants and visitors, including a food hall. Each lab building will combine ultramodern, fully equipped research spaces with modernized creative office amenities like on-site fitness and indoor/outdoor collaboration, conference, and meeting areas. The campus’ design also prioritizes sustainability, incorporating eco-friendly elements into its build environment and operations, minimizing environmental impact, and providing occupants with a healthier, more productive environment.

“Our partnership with Sterling Bay on this exciting development was born out of our shared vision for delivering a best-in-class life sciences experience in San Diego,” said Mark Burkemper, Head of Transactions at Harrison Street. “We’re proud to collaborate on building a world-class facility that will advance Sorrento Mesa’s reputation as a leading hub for life sciences.”

Sterling Bay and Harrison Street have partnered on life sciences projects across the U.S., including approximately 1M square feet of recently completed lab space in San Diego and Chicago, with more coming soon to Denver, Philadelphia, and Raleigh-Durham. Harrison Street is a leading investor in the life sciences sector with over 8.5 million square feet of lab space across 58 assets globally and is one of the largest owners of life sciences assets in the U.K. 

The firm’s assets are associated with the top research and academic institutions with a significant presence in top biotech cluster markets, including San Diego, San Francisco, and Boston.

Pacific Center is expected to be delivered in phases over the next four years, with the first phase turning over to future tenants in Q4 2024. 


Sterling Bay is a national real estate company that boldly transforms spaces, industries, and communities. Known for creating innovative, connected, and collaborative spaces for world-class companies such as Google, McDonald’s, WPP, Pinterest, Dyson, and Tyson Foods, Sterling Bay is recognized for award-winning real estate projects across the creative office, life sciences, industrial and residential sectors. Sterling Bay’s team of more than 185 professionals is responsible for a development pipeline of over $20 billion in markets nationwide. 


Harrison Street is one of the leading investment management firms exclusively focused on alternative assets. Since its inception in 2005, the Firm has created a series of differentiated investment solutions focused on demographic-driven, needs-based assets. The Firm has invested across senior housing, student housing, healthcare delivery, life sciences, storage real estate, and social and utility infrastructure. Headquartered in Chicago with offices in London, Toronto, San Francisco, and Washington D.C., the Firm has more than 220 employees and approximately $50 billion in assets under management. Clients of the Firm include a global institutional investor base domiciled in North America, Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and Latin America. Harrison Street was awarded Best Places to Work by Pensions & Investments for seven consecutive years (2014-2020) and was recognized by PERE as the 2021 Alternatives Investor of the Year, North America, and 2020 Global Alternatives Investor of the Year.