‘Modular’ Lab Spaces Planned for STAR Campus

‘Modular’ Lab Spaces Planned for STAR Campus


Check out the following article posted by The Newark Post regarding the STAR Campus:

Delaware Technology Park will create a 10,000-square-foot wet lab on the University of Delaware’s Science, Technology and Advanced Research Campus for small, start-up companies officials hope will grow in the space and relocate elsewhere in the region, eventually creating jobs for Delawareans and contributing to the economy.

The labs are slated for the Phase II building constructed by Delle Donne Associates on the former Chrysler site, now the STAR Campus. Other tenants include SevOne, a network and data center performance management company, as well as UD’s College of Health Sciences and physical therapy clinic.

According to DTP spokeswoman Tracy Shickel, there will be 10,000 square feet of labs, office space and shared space available for lease with enough room for 10 to 12 small science and technology companies with one to three employees. The labs are “modular,” meaning they can be configured to a company’s needs using partitions that can make the space as small as 250 square feet and as large as 1,000 square feet.

DTP will handle all the leasing and decide which companies are appropriate temporary tenants.

Ernie Delle Donne of Delle Donne & Associates said those who rent space will be required to bring their own unique equipment. However, there will be a shared equipment room with common items, and the labs will be outfitted with amenities like tables, sinks and fume hoods.

“A lot of the infrastructure that is generally in all labs,” he said

The labs will be built with the help of a $3 million, 10-year loan out of the state’s Strategic Fund with the idea being that small start-ups will use the labs as an “incubator” to grow and then relocate elsewhere in the region, possibly on the STAR Campus.

UD’s Vice Provost for Research Charlie Riordan said inexpensive lab space is hard to come by in Delaware, and DTP is at full occupancy. He said the wet labs planned for the Delle Donne building will therefore create more space and help these start-ups get on their feet.

“We haven’t had that space which is so important to early-phase, mostly life sciences companies,” Riordan said. “I think it’s very important for the whole research community in the Newark region and in the state.”

Delle Donne said it’s all about helping create the next job creators.

“That’s really what we’re doing,” he said. “We’re trying to prime the pump and really give these companies a foothold.”

Construction on the labs wont begin until May, with occupancy not until September, but Delle Donne said there’s already a long list of interested parties.

“There’s been a lot of interest just waiting,” he said.

In anticipation, he’s planning a 3,500-square-foot expansion in the back of the Phase II building to open next summer for those that want to relocate from the temporary lab into a permanent space.

“This space is intended for companies that spin off from these incubators,” he said. “They could literally go from the wet lab incubator, down a corridor, to the new space. It doesn’t get any easier than that.”

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