MEETING MINUTES— 6.11.2015
Location: Nebraska Innovation Campus | 2021 Transformation Drive | Lincoln, NE | 4pm
Present: Members: Nga Vu, Tim Kirkpatrick, Fred Knight, Steve Maly, Patty Gerlach, Peggy Green, Julie Robinson, Shannon Meysenburg, Joanne Bartels, Kevin Harrington, Diana Schilf, Peggy Green, Jon Borton, Darlene Boardman
Guests: Jill Werner, Hannah Swanson
NEBRASKA INNOVATION CAMPUS TOUR – Kate Engel, Community Engagement & Operations Mgr
Nebraska Innovation Campus (NIC) is a research campus designed to facilitate new and more in-depth partnerships between UNL and the private sector. Kate said their department is comprised of 2 1/2 employees right now – two full time and one part time. They are responsible for the development and management of the property.
The land was acquired by the University of Nebraska in 2009 and it sits on the area that was formally the footprint of Nebraska State Fair. The original 4-H building was gutted and transformed in to a combination of office space, meeting space, innovation space and it also boasts an auditorium space with 400 seats. Future plans include a restaurant. The outside walls of the original Agriculture Building remain as well, but structurally the building was beyond repair so it’s essentially a new building with the original brick facade. NIC’s footprint encompasses Devaney Center and the Ice Box as well.
NIC will have over 2.2 million sq. ft. of research, meeting and office space upon full buildout. It is envisioned that up to 5,000 people could be working on NIC with 1/3 employed by UNL and 2/3 employed by private business and non-UNL employers.
The first wave of people coming to NIC will take place on July 6th when the Food Science Department relocates to NIC from East Campus. The end goal is to move virtually all of the East Campus departments to NIC except for the dairy store which will remain.
The tour included a glimpse of Nebraska Innovation Studio or “the maker space” as it has been dubbed. This area holds a number of tools and machinery designed to allow people to create and develop their inventions and ideas. The space is available to the public with a monthly membership fee and after they complete training and/or certification for using the equipment. There are currently over 700 members. More information about the space and some of the recent inventions can be seen at http://make.unl.edu.
There are 8 breakout rooms for meeting or training purposes. These rooms have a closed circuit television feed from the auditorium area. The Alumni Association handles the rental of these areas and over 18,000 people have already used the facilities.
The Food Innovation Center is the new home of the UN-L Food Science and Technology Department will give faculty and students more space to do research in food processing, safety, allergens and nutrition, while also designating classrooms for chemistry, microbiology and food product development.
The Greenhouse Innovation Center consists of a 30,000 SF head house and 15,000 SF mechanically cooled greenhouses in the first phase of construction. Later phases could add up to another 30,000 SF of head house and 45,000 SF of greenhouses. The head house accommodates a state-of-the-art conveyor system to move plants to areas where cameras can take high resolution images of them.
The end goal of NIC is to be a zero-waste facility. They adhere to the Central Renewable Energy System guidelines and the campus is harnessing the resources of the city’s wastewater treatment plant by capturing the heating/cooling characteristics of the 62 degree water generated by the treatment process. It’s estimated that NIC will be able to heat/cool 1.8 million SF of space using this technology.
***** Q & A *****
Darlene asked what type of companies would be a good fit for NIC. Kate said that almost any type of business would be welcome with the exception of a call center.
Joanne asked if more information regarding the use and rental of the facility is available in the website and Kate replied that it was.
- The next Association meeting is Thursday, July 9th June 11th
- THE PIZZA RANCH – 84th & Lexington | 11:30am – 1:00pm
- Speaker – Todd Mulliner – Nebraska Economic Development Corporation
- The next Board meeting is Wednesday, August 26th, 3:30pm at the Lipert’s residence.
Respectfully submitted by Fred Knight