Project of the Month: Timberline completes construction at bluebird bio’s headquarters at Assembly Row - designed by Jacobs

October 21, 2022 - Construction Design & Engineering
Photo credit: Anton Grassl

Somerville, MA Timberline has completed construction of a new headquarters for bluebird bio, a gene therapy company and the first biotech to relocate to Assembly Row. The 60,000 s/f space is located at 455 Grand Union Blvd., a soon-to-be LEED Certified Gold building owned by Federal Realty Investment Trust (FRIT).

Photo credit: Anton Grassl


Photo credit: Anton Grassl


The “new nest” – bluebird-speak for its headquarters – was designed to reflect a hybrid working model, with employees flexing their time between work and home and the workplace serving as both a convening site and a place for quiet work. Open workstations, huddle areas and rooms for individual work with technology to support the fluidity of the culture and work style, while multipurpose rooms, including a café and coffee house, serve as hubs for company-wide gatherings.

“Construction on the site was completed within an ambitious, five-month project construction schedule,” said Paul Boutchia, vice president with JLL’s Project & Development Services group. “We collaboratively worked with the design and construction teams to communicate with bluebird and FRIT for a rapid decision-making process.” With the supply chain issues and delays, timely decisions were critical to forging toward a successful occupancy in the spring of 2022.

Photo credit: Anton Grassl


Photo credit: Anton Grassl


“We worked closely with bluebird bio to meet a challenging timeline while creating a space that employees would be proud to work in,” said Jacobs people & places solutions senior vice president Gary Morris. “That approach allowed for a design that promotes employee health and wellbeing and supports a variety of work styles.”

The overall project partners included the owner’s project management team at JLL, the architecture and design team at Jacobs, Timberline Construction for construction management, engineering partners at NV5, the property owner Federal Realty Investment Trust, as well as furniture provided by Red Thread and great team of subcontractors.

Project Team included: 

  • Timberline Construction - Construction Manager
  • Jacobs - Architect
  • JLL - Owner’s Project Manger
  • NV5 - Engineering
  • Red Thread - Furniture | Demountable Walls | Technology
  • Wright Architectural Millwork - Architectural Millwork
  • Atlantic Power & Light - Electrical


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