UCSD Life Science Innovator Research Space One of Many New Building Projects
Four years into the current recession, you might expect new building projects to be dwindling on the campus of the University of California San Diego, but you'd be wrong. Yes, there are buildings that were planned back in the day and already have pre-2008 bond funding in place, but then there are newly-proposed (and approved) projects like the Center for Innovative Therapeutics, which will be an "innovator space" and "entrepreneurial life science hub" for translational research. The 100,000sf facility is slated for a 6.3-acre lot between the Moores Cancer Center and the La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology that is part of the UCSD Science Research Park. Funding for the new building has reportedly already been secured and the design process is underway.
[The proposed Center for Innovative Therapeutics at UCSD, courtesy of Xconomy]
In keeping with current public-private cohabitation trends, the new life science space would be shared by academic researchers (including genomics research and cancer research affiliated with Moores) and private start-up ventures. The startups in particular would benefit from sharing the small-animal vivarium, GMP manufacturing center (that could be used to produce stem cell products ), biorepository, and other resources, as well as mass spectrometers and other big-ticket biomedical research equipment at Moores.
UCSD officials' announcement of the new shared research facility comes on the heels of Johnson & Johnson's opening the doors of its Janssen Research & Development facility in San Diego, making about 30,000sf of lab and office space available to 18-20 eager startups. (See our earlier blog on modular research labs for more on the Janssen complex.) The Janssen R&D facility is only just over a mile away from the proposed UCSD Center for Innovative Therapeutics and the UCSD Science Research Park, which should make for the kind of bioresearch density that leads to collaboration and productive networking.
Not everyone is happy about all the building going on in San Diego, especially at its public universities. Some, like the group California Watch, question the soundness of developing infrastructure during a financial crisis like the one California is still struggling with. In a recent article they cite these statistics:
- $2 billion worth of brand-new facilities are in the planning, design or construction stages at UCSD, up from $1.6 billion last summer.
- New clinical research and biological and physical sciences buildings are scheduled to get under way next year.
- Recently opened buildings include biomedical research and marine labs and a cardiovascular center.
- The broader UC system has more than 200 building projects under way at its 10 campuses and five medical centers, together valued at $8.9 billion.
Of course, for others these numbers are good news and show that the longterm life science research picture for California's premier public institutions continues to be strong. And in San Diego's still-tight real estate market, space will be available for the biotech offshoots that fuel the city's popularity as a bioscience hub and create jobs for the local economy.
Biotechnology Calendar, Inc. started 19 years ago at UCSD and still holds its mammoth San Diego Biotechnology Vendor Showcase™ events twice-annually on the La Jolla campus. The date for our next show is August 23rd, 2012. We actively invite laboratory researchers from across the San Diego life science community to attend and see the latest in equipment technology, enjoy a great buffet meal, and chat with suppliers from the top companies locally and across the United States about their lab needs.
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