Drone maker Arcturus UAV moves to Petaluma; WeWork Marin expands; Meridian Commercial Real Estate grows

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It was one of the biggest leases of commercial space in the Marin-Sonoma corridor in 2018, but the move of aerial drone maker Arcturus UAV to Petaluma flew under the radar.

After its takeoff in 2007 from the mind of founder D’Milo Hallerberg, Arcturus UAV has soared to greater heights in the world of making unmanned aerial vehicles. While it is a defense contractor, the company makes UAVs for surveillance, mapping and remote sensing, rather than lethal attack.

In November, the company inked a nine-year lease for 98,000 square feet of industrial space at 1035 and 1039 N. McDowell Blvd. in Petaluma and moved in in the first months of this year. That includes about 80,000 square feet of former Calix space at 1035 N. McDowell, vacated after the telecommunications software company downshifted to 20,000 square feet in the city and moved its headquarters to San Jose in the closing months of 2018.

Hallerberg declined to talk to the Business Journal for this story.

Arcturus UAV makes two types of drones, the catapult-launched T-20 and the Jump 15 and Jump 20, both of which can take off and land vertically. The T-20 and Jump 20 are designed to remain aloft as high as 15,000 feet for about 16 hours.

The company also builds sensor packages such as rotating gimbals with cameras and detectors, creates command and control software, and communications systems to control the vehicles in flight.

In 2017, Arcturus UAV was invited with two other makers of such craft to compete for a $475 million contract to build intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance vehicles for the U.S. Special Operations Command, according to defense industry trade press.

Gil Sayday of Keegan & Coppin Co. Inc./Oncor International represented Arcturus UAV in the April and November leases in Petaluma. Brian Foster, Trevor Buck and Steven Leonard represented SSCOP DE LLC, an affiliate of Basin Street Properties, in the November deals.

WeWork expands again in Marin County

New York-based coworking space provider WeWork has been rapidly expanding its network of locations around the world, and it has already expanded its first North Bay site just after opening at the beginning of this year.

In the middle of last year, the company leased 20,000 square feet in 1 Belvedere Place, part of atwo-building office complex tucked into a hillside overlooking Highway 101 in Mill Valley. Now, the company has expanded into much of the remaining space in the property, located in 2 Belvedere Place, and owner SKB is marketing the property for sale, according to real estate sources.

The company declined to comment, but last year Elton Kwok, Northern California general manager told the Business Journal:

“This Mill Valley location will serve as a complimentary outpost to the many entrepreneurs, executives, and small businesses at WeWork, scaled to meet the needs of the dynamic community north of San Francisco.”

Located just above the Strawberry Village shopping Center, the Mill Valley location is the farthest north in Northern California for WeWork, which has 258 sites across 74 cities and 22 countries. That includes 17 Bay Area spots in San Francisco, the East Bay and Silicon Valley.

Private offices at WeWork’s 1 Belvedere location rent for $1,020 a month, and “hot desk” drop-in-friendly open tables are available for $650 a month, according to the website. Pricing for 2 Belvedere isn’t available yet.

Amenities in Mill Valley include soundproofed “phone booth” tiny offices for private calls and video chats, high-speed internet via secure WiFi and Ethernet and microroasted coffee.

Meridian Commercial grows to 15 agents

A familiar face in North Bay commercial real estate is back affiliated with the Meridian Commercial name. At the beginning of this year, Steve Easley shifted from the San Rafael office of Cushman & Wakefield to San Rafael-based Meridian, a brokerage he was president of at one time.

Meridian originally started in 1993 then dissolved as partners left to affiliate with what is now Cushman & Wakefield. Meridian was rebooted in 2010 with Matt Brown, one of the original partners, at the helm. Today, the firm as 15 agents, which would put it about neck and neck with Newmark Knight Frank’s North Bay contingent.

Also in January, Scott Gerber moved from Bradley Commercial Real Estate to Meridian, and Kate Raphael also affiliated with the brokerage.

In April of this year, David Walwyn and Brian Eisberg left Newmark Knight Frank’s San Rafael office for Meridian. After nearly 20 years with Keegan & Coppin Co. Inc./Oncor International, Eisberg went to Orion Partners in 1999, and Walwyn went there from Insignia ESG in 2003. The two worked together at Orion then went to what became Newmark Knight Frank in 2010, when Orion Partners shut down.

Contact Jeff Quackenbush at jquackenbush@busjrnl.com or 707-521-4256.

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