The project is the first of what could be as many as seven techparks planned throughout Southern New Jersey, which hastraditionally lagged behind the Central and Northern parts of theGarden State in terms of economic development. South JerseyTechnology Center is planned to be a focal point of high-techproduct development and commercialization by allowing companies andRowan faculty and students to interact and conduct more federal-and state-funded research projects. The school's engineering,business and science colleges and departments are expected to beheavily involved in the project's mission.

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Job creation and development of new companies is the ultimategoal. "A state university has an obligation to take a leadershiprole in economic development," explains Rowan president Dr. DonaldFarish. "We want to fulfill that obligation, and the TechnologyCenter will be instrumental in helping us do so."

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As far as the EDA funding, "it recognizes our academic expertiseand potential to be an economic growth engine for the region," addsDr. Philip Tumminia, executive vice president for universityadvancement. "Government and industry leaders in the region haveprovided their support for this project."

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The university plans to develop the project on a 50-acre sitethat it recently acquired just outside of Glassboro in Manuta, NJ.Glassboro is located about 25 miles south of Philadelphia. Thefirst phase will be a 25,000-sf building that will cost upwards of$20 million. Rowan is looking to partner with corporations in theregion to help make up the difference between the state funding andthe total cost.

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The initial structure is expected to be ready by late 2002.While total projected costs haven't been disclosed, universityofficials are planning a build-out of four buildings totaling560,000 sf. The site will be designed for further expansion beyondthat, at some point down the road.

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