OAK RIDGE, Tenn., May 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Business leaders and officials
in the Knoxville-Oak Ridge Innovation Valley announced plans today to build
the nation's first technology park located at a national laboratory.
Work will begin this summer on the Oak Ridge Science and Technology
Park on the campus of Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). The lab has
constructed nearly $2 billion in new facilities in the recent years,
including the Spallation Neutron Source, which is the nation's largest
science project, and the Center for Computational Sciences, which is
assembling the world's fastest super computer.
In addition to the lab, the Knoxville-Oak Ridge Innovation Valley is
home to the University of Tennessee, the Tennessee Valley Authority
headquarters and more than 1,000 tech-based companies. The Innovation
Valley was recently recognized by Forbes magazine as one of the top five
hottest business metro areas in the country.
The Oak Ridge Science and Technology Park will be available for private
sector companies and will be used to help create new companies from
technologies developed at ORNL.
The technology park already has announced its first tenant. Pro2Serve
Professional Project Services Inc., an engineering services firm, will
construct a $15 million, 100,000-square-foot facility to serve as the
company's National Security Engineering Center and corporate headquarters.
Pro2Serve plans to add approximately 200 new employees to its staff.
Pro2Serve President Barry Goss said the decision to locate within a
national lab was based on "strong relationships with Department of Energy
and the lab in deploying national security technologies."
Gerald Boyd, manager of the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge office,
said the lab "develops some of the world's most important new technologies.
One of our priorities is to help make those technologies available for new
companies and new jobs."
The park property will be managed by the Community Reuse Organization
of East Tennessee (CROET).
ORNL Director Jeff Wadsworth predicts the park -- in combination with
the lab's nanotech, biotech, computing capabilities and energy research --
will attract "universities, large established companies, and small start-up
companies. Each can benefit from the unique resources we have in Oak
Oak Ridge National Laboratory is managed for the Department of Energy
by a partnership between the University of Tennessee and Battelle.
SOURCE East Tennessee Economic Development Agency