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Illinois Governor proposes $500M toward development of regional quantum hub

February 29, 2024
By: Laura Lacy Graham

Furthering his previous calls for the state to become "the Silicon Valley of quantum development" and part of a sweeping quest to remake the state a hub for the future of semiconductors, quantum, and AI, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker recommended $500 million in capital investments to build and maintain a regional quantum computing hub as part of his new fiscal year (2025) budget. Coupled with a previous $200 million Rebuild Illinois investment in the Chicago Quantum Exchange (CQE), the administration’s proposed investment seeks to build a quantum campus to attract private investment and create jobs. 

"We already were establishing ourselves as a leading hub for quantum development—now we have the opportunity to take it a big step further," Pritzker told Axios

Within the $500 million proposed, press reports indicate Pritzker has earmarked $200 million for a shared cryogenic facility for quantum research and development, $100 million to support infrastructure and site development for the quantum campus, and $200 million for matching funds. While that breakout is not in budget documents, presumably the matching funds could be used for Illinois’ effort to secure the headquarters of the National Semiconductor Technology Center (NSTC), their Tech Hub proposal, or other initiatives.

The governor’s announcement comes as a coalition led by the University of Chicago-based CQE competes for up to $70 million in federal funding during the second phase of a federal initiative aimed at supercharging innovation economies that have the potential to become global leaders in a critical technology within a decade. The Bloch Tech Hub, the cross-sector coalition led by the CQE, earned the region a designation as a US Regional Innovation and Technology Hub for quantum technologies in the first phase of the program last year.

Other recent funding toward the state’s push towards regional hub development includes $280 million in federal funding as part of the 2018 National Quantum Initiative Act and a combined $150 million from IBM and Google to the University of Chicago and the University of Tokyo last year for two separate plans to advance quantum computing.

quantum computing, semiconductors, AI