Lab Near UF Campus To Feature Access To UF Innovate Network In New Partnership4 years ago
Trimark Properties and UF Innovate have worked in close proximity within Gainesville’s Innovation District for years. Now, they’ve turned familiarity into a partnership on Trimark’s state-of-the-art laboratory in Catalyst Park.
“UF Innovate and Trimark have existed literally side by side for the past few years here in the Innovation District,” said Mark Long, director of incubation services at UF. “Taking that relationship to a partnership level was a natural progression to benefit everyone in Gainesville that is in entrepreneurship.”
The 3,300-square-foot lab with private office space, named the 1140 Lab is designed to work as either a wet (chemical-centric) or dry (computer-centric) lab space. As part of the affiliation agreement with UF Innovate, potential renters now have access to equipment such as autoclaves, chemical fume hoods, incubators, a -80° freezer, an upgraded HVAC system and both DI and RO water filtration systems.
Aside from access to equipment, Long said the partnership will help whoever moves into the 1140 Lab grow by providing extra resources a business normally wouldn’t have, such as potential funding opportunities and UF Innovate’s extensive network.
Whether it’s one company moving into the whole 1140 building or two into separate 1665 square foot suites, the value UF Innovate can provide for researchers, medical professionals or entrepreneurs “cannot be overstated,” said Trimark CEO John Fleming.
“Access to vital equipment necessary for experiments without the need to self-fund these financially burdensome tools is a major value add for any company,” he said. Fleming added that UF Innovate's advisors, education workshops, symposiums and networking events are just some of the other benefits provided by the partnership. Lab renters will also have access to the UF Library system, the most comprehensive library system in the state of Florida, as part of the agreement. Trimark’s other projects around the Innovation District, like Ingenuity and the 417 Building, have given the company insight on developing office space in the area and are part of an overarching goal of bringing the Innovation District new life.
“Our vision, that of UF and Trimark, for the Innovation District area hasn’t changed from the original concept,” Fleming said. “What we did find, once the master plan was in place, was the need to aggressively work on actual infrastructure so prospective companies or entrepreneurs could recognize the tangible changes to the area.”
It’s this shared goal to foster an entrepreneurial support network in Gainesville that ultimately made a partnership with Trimark an easy choice, Long said.
“We look for potential partners that can enhance the ability of startup companies to move here, grow here and stay here,” he said. “And, Trimark is a really effective enhancement to our efforts to build an entrepreneurial community down here in mid-Gainesville.”