E’ville Biz: Electronic Arts abruptly closes Maxis Studio, McKesson signs big lease in Art.com Building

Published On March 5, 2015 | By Rob Arias | Local Business, News & Commentary

The Electronic Arts owned game developer Maxis that created the hit SimCity franchise abruptly shuttered its Emeryville studio doors yesterday. The announcement was made through Maxis designer Guillaume Pierre via Twitter and quickly went viral amongst the gaming community. Maxis’ studio was located in Wareham’s Heritage Square development and employed roughly 100 people.


Maxis was originally founded in 1987 and acquired by Electronic Arts in 1997. EA confirmed the closure through a press release and offered this reassurance that the former employees would be provided alternatives and assistance:

All employees impacted by the changes today will be given opportunities to explore other positions within the Maxis studios and throughout EA. For those that are leaving the company, we are working to ensure the best possible transition with separation packages and career assistance.

Feature Photo: Maxis employees pose for a group photo at Doyle-Hollis Park


SimCity Developer Maxis Emeryville Closed by EA

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By Cassidee Moser

Publisher Electronic Arts has closed down SimCity development studio Maxis Emeryville.

“Today we are consolidating Maxis IP development to our studios in Redwood Shores, Salt Lake City, Helsinki and Melbourne locations as we close our Emeryville location,” an EA representative told IGN. “Maxis continues to support and develop new experiences for current Sims and SimCity players, while expanding our franchises to new platforms and developing new cross-platform IP.”

EA also stresses that the closure of this studio will not in any way impact their plans for The Sims, and that “all employees impacted by the changes today will be given opportunities to explore other positions within the Maxis studios and throughout EA.”

Read More on IGN.com →


Meanwhile RelayHealth, a division of McKesson who are a Fortune-15 company and the nation’s largest drug distributor, has reportedly signed a 50,000 square foot lease in the Art.com building. RelayHealth provides connectivity and communications services to the Health Care industry according to their website. Relay joins a recent migration of Health Care providers to the city that includes Stanford and UCSF. The Emeryville Marina business park building is owned by International real estate investment company Hines.

McKesson division snags 50,000 square feet in East Bay tower

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By Roland Li
RelayHealth, a division of healthcare giant McKesson Corp., has leased 50,000 square feet at 2100 Powell St. in Emeryville, according to a person familiar with the deal.
RelayHealth, which provides healthcare connectivity and communications services, will move in May from nearby 6425 Christie Ave. in Emeryville. The tenant needed additional space to accommodate growth, said Joey Nord, a McKesson spokeswoman. “We felt that particular workspace was representative of our collaborative, technology-driven culture,” said Nord.

Hines acquired 2100 Powell St. in 2006. The asking rent was around $40 per square foot, and the building is 82 percent occupied, said a Hines spokesman. Oracle, Novartis, Sutter Health and UCSF’s Children’s Hospital have previously leased the space that RelayHealth is taking, he said.

Read More on SF Business Times →

About The Author

is a third generation Californian and East Bay native who moved to Emeryville in 2003. A new parent in the community, he can often be seen walking his French Bulldog rescue "Fiona" around his Park Avenue District neighborhood, traversing the greenway on his bike or enjoying his favorite Emeryville small businesses. Rob's "day job" is as a creative professional.

One Response to E’ville Biz: Electronic Arts abruptly closes Maxis Studio, McKesson signs big lease in Art.com Building

  1. Phil Epstein says:

    Sad to see Maxis close, although I never did manage to meet any of them 🙁 Some truly genre-defining games came out of there over almost 30 years!

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