Bayer opens quality-control facility in West Berkeley

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Bayer, a pharmaceutical company, recently announced the completion of a $100 million quality-control facility at its manufacturing site in West Berkeley.

The facility will develop Bayer’s treatments for hemophilia A, a genetic disorder which prevents blood from clotting normally.

The Berkeley facility manufactures and distributes all of Bayer’s hemophilia A treatments to more than 70 countries and 400,000 patients globally. The site also houses Bayer’s U.S. headquarters for research, development and biotech manufacturing, according to a 2015 press release from Bayer that originally announced the facility.

The completed project is a world-class laboratory facility, according to City Councilmember Sophie Hahn, who toured the site Thursday. Hahn described the lab as a “controlled environment” with many filtration systems and vacuum-sealed rooms.

Bayer has applied for and expects to receive LEED Gold certification, an award given to buildings that limit greenhouse gas pollution and are water- and energy-efficient. Hahn commended the designation, which is harder for specialty labs to receive than houses or offices.

Bayer’s Berkeley facility currently employs more than 1,600 people and is the largest private employer in Berkeley, according to Hahn. According to the Bayer press release, the construction of the new facility brought an additional 325,000 hours of jobs to Berkeley.

Hahn emphasized that, because the changes were made on Bayer’s Berkeley campus, which is already zoned as designated for laboratory space, the development does not change the character of West Berkeley in any way.

In addition, the Bayer campus has a unique, voluntary development agreement with the city of Berkeley, according to Hahn. Hahn said that Bayer pays taxes “like any other business,” and brings people to Berkeley for work.

“Bayer is … contributing to the well-being of our community,” Hahn said. “Berkeley as a city is looking forward to continuing and deepening this partnership.”

Contact Rachael Cornejo at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @RachaelCornejo.