SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan today announced VentureTECH funding for three important capital projects for the University of Illinois’ Champaign-Urbana Campus that will create 1,500 construction jobs locally. The three projects total $123 million and include construction of the Post Genomics Institute, a new building for the National Center for Supercomputing Applications and an expansion of the Micro and Nanotechnology Laboratory.
“These three projects are part of our VentureTECH program, my administration’s groundbreaking technology program,” Governor Ryan said. “VentureTECH is designed to allow Illinois to compete in the Global Marketplace of the 21st Century.”
The state is investing $75 million for the Post Genomics Institute to expand the U of I’s research strengths in the basic sciences, engineering and physical sciences. The Post Genomics Institute will be a centerpiece for biotechnology and genomic research providing space that bridges cross-discipline, cutting edge research in the biological sciences. The combination of engineering approaches with modern molecular/cell biology is expected to have commercial appeal in the health care and bioprocessing industries.
The new National Center for Supercomputing Applications building provides space to consolidate staff and equipment which are now located in seven buildings across campus and the community, improving efficiency and combined effectiveness. The NCSA is one of two national centers supported by the National Science Foundation. This investment will enhance the NCSA’s competitiveness in seeking additional federal funds and new initiatives.
Expanding the Micro and Nanotechnology Laboratory will provide critical upgrades and increase space for one of the finest university-based semiconductor labs in the country. The lab’s research is conducted under the auspices of the Center for Compound Semiconductor Microelectronics, which conducts research in four specific areas: semiconductor materials and quantum structures, optoelectronics and photonics, microelectronics for wireless communications and microelectromechanical systems. This technology enables the commercial use of miniaturized technologies to manipulate biological molecules and cells, improve imaging technologies and to better understand biochip technologies for genetic research.
Since 1999 more than $200 million worth of capital improvements have been made at the U of I Champaign-Urbana Campus, including the Technology Incubator and matching funds for the Seibel Computer Science building.