Buildings about to start sprouting around Innovation Square

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By Anthony Clark | The Gainesville Sun

Trimark Properties is moving forward with new buildings in and around Innovation Square after picking a construction manager for the eight-story Infusion Technology Center and plans for apartments, a dorm and a co-work space nearby.

Charles Perry Partners Inc. built the University of Florida Innovation Hub in 2011 and now will build Trimark's $30 million Infusion building next door.

The Hub and Infusion location are on the former Shands at AGH property owned by the UF Development Corporation along Southwest Second Avenue between campus and downtown.

"By selecting CPPI, Trimark has committed to keeping the majority of construction dollars within the local economy," CPPI Chairman and President Breck Weingart said in a news release.

The company recently moved its Diversified Projects Division to a renovated office in the Square.

Groundbreaking for the Infusion Technology Center is expected in the third quarter of this year with construction complete in 2014.

The building is designed to house companies that are interested in working with UF as research partners or to hire graduates.

Trimark has serious interest from a handful of technology companies, including some that want multiple floors, said Managing Partner John Fleming. He said he expects some announcements from the companies within the next 30 days.

The 150,000-square-foot building will include lab space, office space and a rooftop terrace. It also will include 10,500 square feet of restaurant/retail space or small companies in as many as four spaces on the ground floor.

"We will be looking to engage a coffee shop, small deli or small restaurant in one or more of the available spaces," Fleming wrote in an email to The Sun.

The building was designed to achieve Green Globes certification from the Green Building Initiative, an alternative to Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design standards.

Trimark also will be building UF's INSPIREation Hall — a dorm slated to open in 2015 for students who want to start a business — on property the company owns across the street.

The developer hopes to break ground in August on a 77,000-square-foot apartment community called Savion Park with 115 bedrooms in 55 units just south of the Square on the site of the former Compassionate Outreach Ministries church that was demolished last year.

Fleming referred to Savion Park as a transition property for students and young professionals.

"It's on the edge of a very student-oriented district but also on the edge of a young professional district, on the edge of Innovation Square," he said.

The apartments should be ready in July 2014, he said.

Trimark is in the beginning stages of planning Nimbus, an 8,000- to 10,000-square-foot co-work space — or shared office — on the perimeter of the Square and probably will start construction in the fall of 2014, Fleming said.

While he said there is space in the Hub for startup companies and throughout Innovation Square for larger companies, "What we are missing at the moment is for the architect who wants to stop practicing at his house or her house or a lawyer who wants to be part of Innovation Square and can't afford 2,000 square feet but just needs an office, and small startup companies that for whatever reason don't fit within the Hub and just have an idea.

"We're getting a lot of interest."


Virginia MacKoul

Virginia is a graduate from the University of Florida's College of Design Construction and Planning with a degree in Sustainability and the Built Environment, and a minor in Urban Regional Planning. Virginia joined the Front Street team in 2011, as an intern. Upon graduation, Virginia joined the Front Street team full-time as the Director of Client Services. Ms. MacKoul’s addition furthers Front Street’s continued growth and expansion within Gainesville and other North Central Florida markets. She was promoted to Director of Marketing in 2014 and now manages the firm’s team of interns and oversees all marketing and branding activity. Virginia was born in Boston and moved to Lee County, Florida in 1997. Virginia graduated her high school's International Baccalaureate program and started at the University of Florida with a focus on Architecture. Virginia shares Front Street's passion of giving back to the community and those in need. Virginia's hobbies include photography, cooking, football, movies, music, and spending time with her dog, Brinkley.

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