Local technology park, endorsed by Miami University, earns $3.5 million development grantAug 05, 2010
The Miami Heritage Technology Park (MHTP), sponsored by the Oxford
Community Improvement Corporation (OCIC), and located adjacent to Miami
University’s natural areas on Route 73, ranked highest out of 44
proposed projects and has won $3.5 million in site development funding
in the third round of the Ohio Department of Development’s (ODOD) Job
Ready Sites Program.
The funding was announced Friday by Ohio Governor Ted Strickland as part of $34.6 million in Job Ready Site (JRS) and other grants aimed at transforming 14 statewide locations into work sites ready for business and job creation.
“We will provide a space for businesses to collaborate with Miami University, its staff and students, on the commercialization of intellectual property developed through research. MHTP will be a place for student engagement with some of the most exciting technology development in the region,” said MHTP director Todd Dockum, a Miami alumnus. “Our vision is to attract green and sustainable high-tech development to Oxford, leveraging the talents of Miami’s students and staff.”
Miami University strongly supports the MHTP project as an important component of its role in regional economic development efforts and collaboration with the Third Frontier Project.
According to Miami President David Hodge, “Small businesses are being relied on to innovate and develop new technology, and they need to be located near universities with significant research infrastructure and an educational philosophy that sees the value of its students and faculty being involved in cutting edge projects that will impact our state and nation. We believe Miami University is that type of university, and we strongly support this JRS funding to launch the park development and extend our collaboration for economic development in the region.”
The OCIC sponsored the JRS grant application and will control and monitor the spending of the funds.
“Along with our quality of life and “excellent” rated school district, the MHTP will help us attract and retain the highest level of professionals to Miami and Oxford, provide internship opportunities for our students and enhance economic development for our community. We are committed to assist, as much as absolutely possible, those companies interested in locating to the Oxford area,” said OCIC executive director Alan Kyger.
The JRS program was authorized by the voters in 2005 and was created to bolster Ohio's inventory of available facility sites ready with utility and transportation infrastructure. The properties in the JRS program are evaluated for funding based on their ability to provide optimal infrastructure capabilities and attract economy-shifting investment. To date the program has awarded approximately $135 million in grants, leveraging nearly $198 million in private investment.
“Companies look to operate in places that offer the most opportunity for a successful work-life balance,” ODOD director Lisa Patt-McDaniel said. “The state’s investments in certified Job Ready Sites help to accelerate investment decisions and maximize the development potential in Ohio’s communities.”
Endorsements for the MHTP application were provided by Miami, the Butler County Planning Commission, the Butler County Commissioners, the Oxford CIC, and several elected officials, including State Representative Tim Derickson.
“Companies that choose to locate to the MHTP can be assured that we will do all in our power to assist them and help them achieve success,” said Derickson.
Dockum started his effort for converting his family property into a technology park in 2005. Funds from the JRS grant will be used for construction of a data center facility, road construction and utility extensions. The park is expected to meet requirements for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum certification.