* This is big…
Construction on the first major piece of The 78 megadevelopment in the South Loop should begin later this year, after Gov. JB Pritzker announced the release of $500 million in capital funding for the Discovery Partners Institute (DPI), a research hub led by the University of Illinois.
DPI will be the anchor of the first phase of the $7 billion 62-acre project, which will be built along a vacant stretch of land on the east bank of the Chicago River between the South Loop and Chinatown.
The University of Illinois plans to build a 500,000-square foot headquarters for DPI as the centerpiece for the first phase of The 78. Construction of the center is expected to be completed in 2024.
The center would focus on specialized research in computing, big data, food and agriculture, and health and wellness. Project leaders envision DPI as the hub of a statewide research network known as the Illinois Innovation Network (IIN).
* But it’s not all going to Chicago. For instance…
State government has set aside $15 million for a new university building in downtown Springfield.
University of Illinois Springfield officials are in the planning stages for the proposed building. It would be known as the “Innovation Center,” and would be part of a larger “Innovation District,” according to documents distributed by Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s office. […]
UIS is just one of several schools that’s getting a chunk of some $500 million in state capital funding overall. That money is aimed at building a network of public university-based “innovation” hubs: places designed to grow Illinois’ tech industry workforce and help companies get off the ground.
Southern Illinois University Carbondale will receive $2.5 million as part of an effort to boost research and innovation in Illinois. […]
SIU’s “iFERM” hub is part of the statewide group. One of its goals is to find new ways to utilize and market Illinois agricultural products.
The “iFERM” hub will use the $2.5 million in initial funding for food and beverage research, as well as specialty crop agricultural programs and a centralized analytics facility.
Governor J.B. Pritzker announces hundreds of millions of dollars in funding for different institutions across the state, including the UIC health sciences campus in Rockford.
The Northern Illinois Center for Community Sustainability (NICCS) took a major step forward Wednesday when Gov. J.B. Pritzker released $500 million in capital funding appropriated for the Discovery Partners Institute (DPI) and the Illinois Innovation Network (IIN), including $15 million for the NICCS at Northern Illinois University. […]
The 30,000-square-foot NICCS facility will be constructed on the university’s west campus, in an area north of the NIU Convocation Center. It will include classrooms, laboratories, exhibits and collaboration space for work with IIN and private sector partners.
Gov. JB Pritzker on Wednesday touted statewide benefits he said will result from a $500 million state investment in 15 hubs of a University of Illinois-led public-private research institute network.
Eastern Illinois University in Charleston is one of the hubs.
A new on-campus makerspace and startup incubator in Uptown Normal will be Illinois State University’s contributions to a newly funded Illinois Innovation Network, officials said Wednesday. […]
The technology- and education-based startup incubator will be called the ISU/Bloomington-Normal Community Startup Incubator (CSI). It will be located at the new Trail East project in Uptown, where financing issues have delayed construction. The incubator was previously announced.
A $10 million gift from the chairman of the University of Illinois Board of Trustees and his wife is among $454 million raised by universities involved with the Illinois Innovation Network that will help move it forward. […]
“My wife, Anne, and I are thrilled to make this $10 million gift to the university that transformed our lives,” Don Edwards said Wednesday. “We want to pay forward the opportunities we have enjoyed, supporting the students and innovation that are key to progress and economic growth for our state and our nation.” […]
Former Gov. Bruce Rauner originally pledged the $500 million in state funds. But Pritzker said he needed to see proof of the network’s vitality and made the state money contingent on the members matching it.
* Last word…
Pritzker also thanked former Mayor Rahm Emanuel for his work on DPI, which was first announced two years ago. The governor said Emanuel started calling him about the plans for the research hub even before Pritzker was elected governor in 2018, “and he hasn’t stopped calling.”
“Rahm can be relentless when he wants something done,” Pritzker said. “He said that DPI would anchor an ecosystem of tech growth, and would become an unparalleled engine of opportunity for our state. In addition to my gratitude for his support for this project, I’m grateful that the many phone calls from him might now subside.”