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Design firm moving 150 jobs from Newton to Seaport

Design consulting firm Continuum is moving its headquarters from Newton to the Seaport’s Innovation and Design Building, the latest in a string of tech and creative firms moving from Boston’s suburbs into the city.

The company, which employs about 150 people here, helps design consumer products, medical devices, even retail spaces. In June, it plans to move into more than 54,000 square feet in the massive former military depot on the edge of the Seaport District.

It’s a chance for Continuum to design a space where employees across a variety of fields can collaborate, said chief operating officer Carmencita Bua. It’s also a chance to be in a building where many neighbors share a creative manufacturing bent.


“This move is a strategic move for us,” Bua said. “It’s an excellent opportunity for us to access research and access talent.”

A number of companies have moved to Boston in the last few years from suburban locations in search of talented young workers who live in the city.

“I think companies, particularly in innovative, creative industries, want to be where their workers are,” said John Barros, the city’s chief of economic development.

And landlords are designing space to woo them.

Atlanta-based Jamestown Properties has been overhauling the 1.4 million square foot complex on Drydock Ave. and pitching it as a hub for innovative and creative companies. Among their new tenants are architecture firm Elkus Manfredi and software-maker Autodesk, which moved from Waltham.

For Continuum, it’s a bit of a return. The company began in downtown Boston before relocating to West Newton about 16 years ago. Now, Bua said, Continuum wants to be back where the action is.

“Being between two gas stations in Newton was not helping us,” she said.

Tim Logan can be reached at tim.logan@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter at @bytimlogan.