Morning Headlines: Pennovation Center a Second Step Toward an Innovation District?

Photo credit: PennConnects.

Photo credit: PennConnects.

Once a 23-acre industrial site belonging to the DuPont Company, the building space at 34th and Grays Ferry Ave. is now the University of Pennsylvania’s “Pennovation Center,” a 200,000-square-foot mixed-use facility serving as innovation quarters for new businesses and tech startups.

The property is part of Penn’s South Bank project, an extension of their UPStart program.

According to Philly, UPStart “helps faculty and students create businesses, and gives those businesses a physical place to call home.” The South Bank project, however, will go even further.

PennConnects reports South Bank will be be “designed to support entrepreneurial growth as well as innovation for the technology-led economic development shift underway in Philadelphia” and that the project coincides with another one:

The South Bank master plan aligns with the already-released plans by the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation for the long-term revitalization of the entire Lower Schuylkill River into a 500-acre Innovation District that creates a stronger corridor of commercial activity anchored by Penn to the north and the Navy Yard to the South, with the Philadelphia International Airport and other transportation hubs located within the center.

The PIDC master planning, utilizing public/private partnerships, will expand riverfront green space, and connect Penn Park and the Schuylkill River Banks trail system with park land and trails east and south of the site.

Currently, the space has two occupants, but the project’s flexible design allows for future expansion that aims at 750,000 square feet over the next few decades.

Pennovation Center: new Grays Ferry Penn campus incubator [ Philly]

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