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Research Park RoundUp

October 12, 2011

As budgets for economic development tighten across all sectors, measuring and reporting impact becomes even more crucial for sustaining support. The Association of University Research Parks points to three impressive impact reports released this year from Indiana's Purdue Research Park, Nebraska Technology Park and North Dakota State University Research and Technology Park.

The Purdue study found the park network is responsible for a $1.3 billion annual impact for the state and more than 4,000 high-quality jobs paying an average annual salary that is 65 percent higher than the state's average. In Nebraska, researchers found the University of Nebraska Technology Park has an estimated $589.6 million annual impact on the state's economy, and North Dakota State University Research and Technology Park generates $10.9 million annually for local and state governments.

SSTI has compiled below recent announcements for development of tech parks from states including Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Maryland, South Carolina, and West Virginia.

Phase II of the Alabama Robotics Technology Park opened in August. The 35,000-square-foot facility features a test facility for companies currently in the robotics manufacturing industry and will be used for R&D and testing used in military projects and space exploration. This is the second part of a three-phase plan.

In August, Connecticut Gov. Dan Malloy signed into law Public Act 11-57, a measure to authorize the development of a research and technology park on the University of Connecticut campus. The building will include laboratories outfitted with specialized research equipment and space for business incubators. Gov. Malloy approved the use of $170 million in state funds to build and maintain the park. The measure includes $2.5 million to recruit top scientists from around the world.

The City of Leesburg announced in September plans for a Florida Energy and Aerospace Technology park that would target high-tech businesses and bring together aviation and aerospace companies supported by proposed joint-use manufacturing facilities.

The University of Miami Life Science and Technology Park held its official opening last month. The 252,000-square-foot building in the Miami Health District has a mix of offices, retail space and laboratories. Tenants include medical device companies, IT firms and clinical research testing companies.

A new, nonprofit organization in Harford County, Maryland is raising funds for a research park to help commercialize R&D coming out of Aberdeen Proving Ground, reports the Baltimore Business Journal. The proposed research park would provide doctoral and post-doctoral degree opportunities, space for tech transfer collaboration and business incubation.

A planned research park near the Myrtle Beach International Airport would target aeronautics and technology-based companies, reports The Sun News. Construction on the International Technology and Aerospace Park is expected to begin by the end of the year.

West Virginia's Regional Technology Park received a $5.25 million federal grant earlier this year to renovate a major lab building on its campus. The award, which comes from the state Higher Education Policy Commission, is part of a broader effort to establish the park as an anchor piece of the West Virginia Regional Innovation Cluster, a geographic concentration of firms focused on research in energy, chemicals and materials.

Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Carolina, West Virginiar&d, research parks