More progress is unfolding in Innovation Square.
New street developments underway in the science and technology community are part of an infrastructure plan that will create lively, walkable blocks that support interaction and collaboration. The proposed roads, SW 9th Street and SW 3rd Ave, are part of the Community Redevelopment Agency’s (CRA) plan to support the development of Innovation Square. SW 9th Street will be a “signature corridor” of the technology community, according to CRA project engineer Diane Gilreath.
“This is happening much faster than I would have ever imagined,” said Gilreath. “Momentum is gaining because everyone involved is really buying into the vision of Innovation Square.”
SW 9th Street and SW 3rd Avenue are elements of a master plan to convert land in Innovation Square into infrastructure that will result in more exchanges between individuals, be it intellectual or monetary. The streets will provide long-term structure to ease the changing patterns of land use, building form, and building occupancies in the area.
SW 9th Street and SW 3rd Avenue will cut through land that once held the Alachua General Hospital (AGH). Since the closing and demolition of the hospital in fall 2009, a team of organizations – including the City of Gainesville, University of Florida, and the CRA – have cooperated to develop a transformation plan for the 10-acre property that lies in the core of Innovation Square.
“It’s a real testament to the community’s belief in Innovation Square and the future of Gainesville,” managing partner at Trimark Properties, John Fleming, said of the community’s uniting to achieve a common goal in Innovation Square. Trimark will be developing the Infusion Technology Center at UF Innovation Square, which will be adjacent to the Florida Innovation Hub. “Innovation Square represents an opportunity for Gainesville to position itself as a national leader in innovation and technology. We just need to continue taking the right steps to get there.”
The land for SW 9th Street and SW 3rd Avenues is currently owned by the University of Florida Development Corporation (UFDC). The UFDC has agreed to donate the land to the city in assistance with this project.
The repurposing of land at Innovation Square is a cornerstone project of the Community Redevelopment Agency’s (CRA) University Heights Area Redevelopment Plan. The progress in infrastructure is one goal of the CRA in an effort to support the creation of Innovation Square. The organization also plans to attract private investment in the technology area.
“At Innovation Square, we’re competing on the world market to attract and retain companies,” Gilbreath said. “We’re setting the stage by installing the utilities, roadway, and network. The developers just need to show up.”
Over the past few years, several steps have been taken to lay the foundation for the redevelopment of land within Innovation Square. Across from Ayers Technology Plaza, the Florida Innovation Hub was constructed as Innovation Square’s first building. The zoning of the area has also changed to a more flexible, form-based code approach. The construction of SW 9th Street and SW 3rd Avenue is just part of the next step.
About Innovation Square
The vision for Innovation Square is an interactive community promoting the stimulation of discovery and the growth of a superior quality of life. Innovation Square is embodied by a planned 40-acre development with over five million square feet of high-tech offices, residences, shops, restaurants and more that connect the University of Florida with downtown Gainesville. Innovation Square seeks to accelerate the development of ideas by encouraging different disciplines to interact, ultimately changing the way we live, work, and play.
About Trimark Properties
A Gainesville-based real estate firm, Trimark Properties focuses on highly specialized, niche developments immediately adjacent to the University of Florida. Trimark’s portfolio is comprised of ultra-luxury boutique apartments, houses including fully restored historic homes, private residence halls, high-tech research space, and the proposed Infusion Technology Center at UF Innovation Square. The eight-story Infusion Technology center will be the first privately-owned commercial real estate building within the core of Innovation Square, featuring over 150,000 square feet of customizable lab, research, retail, and office space. Since its founding in 1992, Trimark Properties remains committed to responsible growth through integrity and teamwork. Visit http://www.trimarkproperties.com to learn more.