CAMBRIDGE, MA – Siena Construction has completed a 13,000 square-foot laboratory and office renovation project at 237 Putnam Avenue, a mixed-use, multi-tenant facility located within Blackstone Science Square in Cambridge’s Riverside neighborhood. Siena acted as the construction manager on the extensive renovations for Brickman Associates on the 3rd floor of the unique brick-and-beam building. Design plans were created by Margolis + Fishman, with mechanical design input from AHA Engineers.

The finished space will be occupied by Empress Therapeutics, a life science firm that uses artificial intelligence and principles of co-evolution and pharmacology to develop research, insights, and therapeutics. Construction during the 21-week on-site schedule consisted of minor demolition of the existing space, and extensive mechanical upgrades to HVAC, electrical, and plumbing, and installation of new drywall, acoustical ceilings, and custom millwork. Siena also oversaw laboratory casework installation of a new autoclave, vacuum pump, and glass wash machine.

Siena’s team collaborated with the design team, the building owners, and end users at Empress to ensure all of the project details were installed to exacting specifications. Siena’s previous experience in the building – with both completed and ongoing renovation upgrades at Blackstone Science Square – provided our management team with critical insights and understanding of the building’s capabilities and system requirements.

Working in an occupied building with active science requires careful planning; Siena also worked closely with the facilities team in order to minimize disturbances to the building’s surrounding tenants. Additionally, construction during the COVID pandemic required additional on-site work protocols and planning to ensure the health and safety of construction workers and the public.

Director of Commercial Construction Anthony Di Carlo led the integrated, collaborative efforts of Siena’s team along with Project Manager Sal Tardanico and on-site Superintendent Jim Moore. The Siena team contributed to scope modifications which led to the project being successfully completed with a significant cost savings for the owners.

“Siena values ongoing collaborations with life science tenants and building owners such as Empress and Brickman,” Sal said. “Thanks to our ongoing partnerships, we can anticipate our client needs and tailor those scientific specifications to the building system’s capabilities. We hope Empress enjoys their space, and that it supports breakthroughs for discovery and health.”

For a photo tour of the 237 Putnam Avenue project, visit Siena’s project page here.