UC Berkeley, SKS Partners Unveil Plans for $2 Billion Innovation Hub at NASA Research Park in California

by Katie Sloan

Mountain View, Calif. — A joint venture between SKS Partners and the University of California, Berkeley has unveiled plans for a $2 billion innovation hub at NASA’s Ames Research Center in the Silicon Valley city of Mountain View.

Plans for the 36-acre development, dubbed Berkeley Space Center, currently include 1.4 million square feet of Class A office and research and development space; wet and dry labs; conference space; academic facilities; retail space; and 18 acres of open green space, including outdoor working yards and a central green for community gatherings, activations and exhibitions.

The focus for the development is to provide research space for companies interested in collaborating with the university and NASA scientists to create future innovations in aviation and space exploration. 

Later phases of the project are set to include short-term stay facilities and student and faculty housing. While the development has not yet received municipal approval, the environmental entitlement process has commenced and is expected to last approximately two years. Construction is tentatively scheduled to begin in 2026.

The development team for Berkeley Space Center includes design, architecture and engineering firm HOK and urban design and landscape architecture firm Field Operations. The joint venture has also tapped CBRE to market the research and development space for lease.

To date, UC Berkeley has contributed $1 million to the Berkeley Space Center joint venture in the form of academic planning and salary for faculty, staff and students working on the project.

If the development is approved, the center will likely incur annual expenses of $750,000 to support the salaries of faculty, staff and students working on-site. In return for this investment, the university will receive a portion of the revenue the real development is expected to generate.

UC Berkeley is consistently ranked among the world’s top public universities by Times Higher Education, and is the flagship university for the 10-campus University of California system. The campus enrolls more than 42,000 undergraduate and graduate students and employs 1,500 full-time and 500 part-time faculty members. 

San Francisco-based SKS Partners is an investor in and developer of commercial real estate properties in the western U.S. Since its founding in 1992, the company has acquired, entitled, developed and operated over 10.5 million square feet of office, research and development, life sciences, mixed-use and multifamily space. 

— Katie Sloan 

You may also like