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Next public company to move to Boston's Innovation District could be LogMeIn of Woburn

Posted by Scott Kirsner  January 4, 2012 11:19 AM

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The big real estate news in Boston's Innovation District last January was that Vertex Pharmaceuticals, a publicly-traded drug development company, was planning to move there from Cambridge, building 1.1 million square feet of new office space on Fan Pier.

This January's real estate news may not be quite that big — only about 100,000 square feet — but it involves the headquarters of a similarly high-profile, publicly-traded company. LogMeIn, a Woburn company that sells products that enable users to remotely access files on their PCs, is close to signing a lease at 316-322 Summer Street. The buildings, originally built as wool and dry goods warehouses just over a century ago, are located within the zone that city officials like to call the Innovation District. But many people — myself included — still refer to this particular neighborhood as Fort Point Channel.

LogMeIn, currently headquartered in the Unicorn Park complex in Woburn (pictured at right), has signed a letter of intent on the new space, according to several neighborhood and real estate industry sources, who requested anonymity because they weren't authorized to talk about the deal. They also tell me that officials in Mayor Menino's office were involved in making the pitch to LogMeIn, contending that younger tech talent will be easier to access in a location just a few blocks away from South Station.

LogMeIn chief executive Michael Simon writes via e-mail, "We have not finalized anything yet regarding our future real estate plans and are looking at options both in the Innovation District and outside of Boston." Good hedge, if he's still negotiating deal terms with the landlord. I'll keep you apprised...

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Scott Kirsner was part of the team that launched Boston.com in 1995, and has been writing a column for the Globe since 2000. His work has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Newsweek, and Variety. Scott is also the author of the books "Fans, Friends & Followers" and "Inventing the Movies," was the editor of "The Convergence Guide: Life Sciences in New England," and was a contributor to "The Good City: Writers Explore 21st Century Boston." Scott also helps organize several local events on entrepreneurship, including the Nantucket Conference and Future Forward. Here's some background on how Scott decides what to cover, and how to pitch him a story idea.

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