CEO Annual Letter
CEO Annual Letter
March 30, 2022
At Brandywine, we view change as an opportunity, and with change, comes transition. How you forge forward can be one of the most impactful times for a business. 2021 was a year of transition, and for us, a time to keep our focus fixated forward. It was a year to embrace our pathway to success, while never losing attention on people, relationships, and long-lasting value creation for all stakeholders.
In 2021, we remained vigilant in maintaining safe and healthy workplaces as the pandemic persisted. Our team pushed ahead in servicing our customers at the highest standards—welcoming many tenants back to the workplace while continuing to navigate the disruptions that new Covid-19 variants presented. The strength of our people during this time is a testament to Brandywine’s longstanding culture of persistence and an unwavering commitment to excellence.
We’ve never been prouder of the people who make up our company. Our strong foundation enabled us to execute key business objectives that set the pace for transformative new realities and durable value creation.
In Austin, we commenced construction on our newly rebranded, 66-acre master-planned community, Uptown ATX, breaking ground on the One Uptown development; and we opened the doors to 405 Colorado, our trophy-class high-rise tower, located downtown. In the Metro DC region, we were selected as master-developer by Terrapin Development Company for a mixed-use neighborhood within the University of Maryland’s Discovery District, and we welcomed Guidehouse to their new headquarters at the reimagined 1676 International building in Tysons, VA. In Philadelphia, we kicked off construction on 3025 JFK Boulevard, the first vertical development within Schuylkill Yards, our 14-acre master-planned neighborhood in University City, Philadelphia, and completed design development for 3151 Market, a trophy-class life science tower within the same innovation neighborhood.
We remained steadfast in our commitment to ESG excellence — making investments in market-leading healthy building certifications and achieving BOMA 360 Performance Building designations. Representative of our continued efforts, we were named one of the 50 most community-minded employers in the Tri-State area on the Civic 50 Greater Philadelphia list. We selected a Community Development Corporation co-development partner for 3151 Market as part of our $16.4 million Schuylkill Yards Neighborhood Engagement Initiative and reached a new milestone of 11.5 million square feet of Green Building Certified space across our portfolio.
We enter 2022 well positioned to capitalize on growth opportunities.
As the life science sector continues to boom in key U.S. markets, we have over 592,000 SF of lab and research space complete or under development and an additional 2.5+ million square feet planned in the high-ranking Greater Philadelphia region. We opened a new lab incubator, B.Labs at Cira Centre, in January 2022 and will begin construction on 3151 Market later this year – adding 417,000 square feet to the total 2.1M square feet of life science potential within our Schuylkill Yards development. 250 King of Prussia Road will open its doors this spring within our Radnor Life Science Center, bringing 168,000 square feet of life science space to one of the region’s highest performing submarkets.
We expect to expand our multifamily portfolio with the start of construction on two residential projects – the Bellet Building in the heart of downtown Philadelphia, with a thriving young adult population; and The Chase at Uptown ATX, in Northwest Austin, known as the city’s ‘second downtown’.
We are energized by our core markets’ underlying strength and excellent growth potential. As Philadelphia continues to experience unprecedented life science demand due to its healthcare and pharmaceutical ecosystem, we will leverage our scale, capacity, and comprehensive expertise to offer extraordinary workspaces. The tech sector’s dynamic growth, combined with in-migration to Sun Belt markets positions our Austin platform to continue to attract next-generation companies who are invested in workplace innovation, brand, and culture. In the Metro DC region, we’ll embrace the astonishing growth of quantum physics research, and continue our longstanding history of partnering with revered academic institutions to realize legacy value through innovative real estate. We’ll continue to leverage our diversified portfolio and active developments in each market to capitalize on trends that have emerged from the pandemic, including a flight to quality workspaces that prioritize healthy building technology and ample outdoor amenity spaces, as well as demand for flexible, move-in ready space which serve as an entry point for tenants to expand within our portfolio.
The past two years have been a stark reminder of the importance of human connection and the powerful role physical space plays in bringing people and communities together.
In 2022, we will remain flexible, agile, and adaptable to shifting demands. We remain committed to delivering high-performance spaces that enable growth, success, and satisfaction of individuals and businesses alike. And above all, we remain laser-focused on protecting and maintaining trust. The trust we’ve worked tirelessly for 25+ years to earn with our customers, partners, employees, and stakeholders – and the trust we instill in our people to deliver on our future-forward mission.
On behalf of the Brandywine Board of Trustees and leadership team, thank you for your continued support and commitment to the company. We are excited about the many opportunities ahead for our business and our people while we deliver business growth and value for you, our shareholders.
With best regards,
Gerard H. Sweeney
President and Chief Executive Officer