SUNY Polytechnic Institute and Rochester Business Leaders
Photonics Working Group Announce Selection of Legacy Tower in
Downtown Rochester for Photonics Business Headquarters and High Tech
Rochester, NY – As a historic initial step in establishing Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s $600 million photonics institute in downtown Rochester, SUNY Polytechnic Institute – the grant awardee and contracting entity with the Department of Defense - today jointly announced with the Rochester Business Leaders Photonics Working Group the selection of the Legacy Tower as the home to the institute’s business headquarters and high tech accelerator/incubator.
Initially the photonics institute will occupy approximately 25,000 square feet to support its business outreach, workforce training, back office operations and business accelerator/incubator. In accordance with the governor’s proven economic development model, the photonics headquarters and accelerator/incubator will help launch and support new photonics-enabled companies and serve as a magnet to draw additional high tech jobs to downtown Rochester.
The technology accelerator/incubator will serve a dynamic dual role of housing the management and administrative functions of the photonics corporations that will be co-locating in downtown to participate in the institute, as well as the spin off companies that will result from technology transfer and the commercialization of photonics innovations. The institute fully anticipates innovative partner companies seeking space across the region, including at Sibley, Eastman Business Park, Canal Ponds, and STC.
“In support of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s innovation-driven economic growth strategy and vision to establish Rochester as the global center of photonics research, SUNY Poly in partnership with the region’s business leaders sought a headquarters location that would not only meet the direct needs of the institute but would contribute to the city’s downtown renewal, and the Legacy Tower was the resoundingly consensus choice,” said Dr. Michael Liehr, CEO of AIM photonics. “This effective and thoughtful selection process would not have been possible without the proactive engagement of Rochester’s distinguished business community whose expertise was vital in guiding us to this positive outcome. We will now move quickly to finalize terms with the owner so we can enter the next phase of the institute’s launch, including beginning the process of hiring personnel. On behalf of SUNY Poly and AIM Photonics, we are delighted to soon be a part of the fabric and vibrancy of Rochester’s exciting downtown.”
“A strong downtown is critical to Rochester, Kodak, and the Eastman Business Park, and I fully support the selection of the Legacy Tower as the site of the photonics institute’s business headquarters,” said Jeff Clarke, CEO of Kodak. “The Legacy Tower is iconic, and its amenities are a perfect fit to house a state of the art operation like the business headquarters, and it will allow the institute to move quickly while maximizing public resources for their intended scientific and job creation goals. I want to thank Governor Cuomo for his strong leadership and investment that will catalyze economic activity across the city and the entire region.”
“On behalf of the 1,600 member Rochester Business Alliance, we would like to thank Governor Cuomo for making the $250 million investment that secured the photonics institute, and for locating its business headquarters and technology accelerator in downtown Rochester,” said Robert Duffy, President of the Rochester Business Association. “I have witnessed again and again what SUNY Poly has been able to accomplish across New York under the leadership of Alain Kaloyeros, including jobs, world class academics, and technological breakthroughs, and I am thrilled that this successful model will be thriving in Rochester.”
Legacy Tower has many advantages identified by the both the Rochester business community and SUNY Poly, notably the immediate readiness of the space within thirty days of a final agreement, which is critical to the mission and goals of the Department of Defense. Additionally, it requires no capital investments or lengthy and costly rehabilitation work. The selection follows a thorough process that took into account location, infrastructure and capabilities, readiness to be occupied, and cost. Headquartering in Legacy Tower is also consistent with Governor Andrew Cuomo’s strategy to establish iconic vacant buildings within the urban core as hubs for innovation and commercialization, much like the old Union Station in downtown Albany that is now a SUNY Poly hub for smart cities programs and companies.
SUNY Polytechnic Institute. SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly) is New York’s globally recognized, high-tech educational ecosystem, formed from the merger of the SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering and SUNY Institute of Technology. SUNY Poly offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the emerging disciplines of nanoscience and nanoengineering, as well as cutting-edge nanobioscience andnanoeconomics programs at its Albany campus, and degrees in technology, professional studies, and the arts and sciences at its Utica/Rome campus. As the world’s most advanced, university-driven research enterprise, SUNY Poly boasts more than $20 billion in high-tech investments, over 300 corporate partners, and maintains a statewide footprint. The 1.3 million-square-foot Albany NanoTech megaplex is home to more than 3,500 scientists, researchers, engineers, students, faculty, and staff, in addition to Tech Valley High School. The Utica/Rome campus offers a unique high-tech learning environment, providing academic programs in technology, including engineering, cybersecurity, computer science, and the engineering technologies; professional studies, including business, communication, and nursing; and arts and sciences, with degrees and course offerings in natural sciences, mathematics, humanities, and social sciences. Thriving athletic, recreational, and cultural programs, events, and activities complement the campus experience. SUNY Poly operates the Smart Cities Technology Innovation Center (SCiTI) at Kiernan Plaza in Albany, the Solar Energy Development Center in Halfmoon, CNSE’s Central New York Hub for Emerging Nano Industries in Syracuse, the Photovoltaic Manufacturing and Technology Development Facility in Rochester, and the Smart System Technology and Commercialization Center (STC) in Canandaigua. SUNY Poly founded and manages the Computer Chip Commercialization Center (Quad-C) on its Utica campus and also manages the $500 million New York Power Electronics Manufacturing Consortium, with nodes in Albany and Rochester, as well as the Buffalo High-Tech Manufacturing Innovation Hub at RiverBend, Buffalo Information Technologies Innovation and Commercialization Hub, and Buffalo Medical Innovation and Commercialization Hub. For information visit www.sunycnse.com andwww.sunypoly.edu.
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