A ‘City of Tomorrow’

Liberty Science Center Scitech Scity Campus gets $15 million in donations

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Frank J. Guarini
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The first phase of SciTech Scity is on track to open in 2022 after the Liberty Science Center secured an additional $15 million in donations.
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Frank J. Guarini
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The first phase of SciTech Scity is on track to open in 2022 after the Liberty Science Center secured an additional $15 million in donations.

In 2022, the first phase of the Liberty Science Center SciTech Scity Campus will become a reality. The project has officially secured $15 million in donations.

The campus aims to launch and grow dozens of world-changing science and technology companies and re-imagine K-12 science education.

This month, LSC President and CEO Paul Hoffman announced a donation of $10 million from former congressman and real estate developer Frank J. Guarini., marking the largest donation to the center ever received.

The 30-acre SciTech Scity campus will include the Liberty Science Center and will be named the Frank J. Guarini Innovation Campus.

“Many of us believe that the renaissance of Jersey City began with Frank Guarini’s visionary work,” said Hoffman. “As a real estate leader, political leader, and businessman, Frank has fostered Jersey City’s success with intelligence, integrity, humor, and elegance. His $10 million gift to SciTech Scity will ensure that Jersey City has a bright future as a world-class center for innovation.”

Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, who led the city’s efforts to donate the land for SciTech Scity, said, “I have had the honor of knowing Frank for many years. By making this historic gift to Liberty Science Center for SciTech Scity, Frank’s generosity will help so many people as it solidifies Jersey City’s future as a hub for science and technology innovators, educators, and entrepreneurs.”

LSC Co-Chair and real estate developer Dave Barry pledged to match 50 cents on the dollar and donated $5 million on behalf of himself and other Jersey City developers.

In 2016 Jersey City donated 12.5 acres of land, valued at $18 million, to the project.

This, coupled with donations and support from founding corporate sponsors EY and Verizon, Joe and Millie Williams, and other philanthropists, puts the first phase of SciTech Scity on a path to open in late 2022.

Phase one

SciTech Scity is envisioned as a “City of Tomorrow,” according to the Liberty Science Center, where companies and researchers test and visitors experience new high-tech products and services before they come to market.

“The Frank J. Guarini Innovation Campus will bring together entrepreneurs, scientists, academics, students, and other thinkers and doers who share Alan Kay’s prescription that the best way to predict the future is to invent it,” Hoffman said.

The first phase of SciTech Scity includes Liberty Science Center and three additions.

The first, Edge Works, will be a central location for innovation comprising two distinct hubs, The Works and the Co-Creation Center. The Works will be a fabrication lab, research and development labs, offices, and co-working space for startups and entrepreneurs. The Co-Creation Center will be a state-of-the-art conference center and tech exhibition gallery.

Scholars Village will consist of residential housing for innovators, scientists, entrepreneurs, STEM graduate students, and families who want to be a part of the SciTech Scity community. The Public Commons will be a five-acre outdoor park that will encourage exploration, creativity, collaboration, and innovation. An events plaza for concerts, farmers markets, art exhibitions, and food-truck festivals will be found at the commons as well as a boardwalk, greenhouses, interactive water features, and a 40-foot-tall iconic art installation.

“Technology entrepreneurship is at the heart of the transformative age we are living in,” said Michael J. Inserra, Americas deputy managing partner of EY, one of SciTech Scity’s founding corporate sponsors. “The strong leadership and ambitious plans for Liberty Science Center and SciTech Scity are perfectly aligned to our focus on driving innovation and building a better working world. So we are excited to bring EY’s energy to this cutting-edge effort which, ultimately, is about inventing the future.”

CFO of Verizon Matthew Ellis said, “Emerging technologies like virtual reality, 3D design, and 5G communications are changing how we live, work, and play in ways never imagined before. As with all transformative innovations, they started with an idea that was then researched, nurtured, and developed. That is what SciTech Scity aims to champion, and it’s complementary to Verizon’s mission to enhance digital inclusion in local communities around the world to address barriers and enable connectivity to those who need it most. We are excited to partner with Liberty Science Center on this far-reaching initiative.”

Subsequent phases of SciTech Scity will include expanded incubation facilities, a science-focused public school, and other facilities to drive STEM innovation and job creation.

DEVCO, led by Christopher Paladino, is the master developer of SciTech Scity; Erikjan Vermeulen of Concrete in Amsterdam is the design architect; and Neil Porter at Gustafson Porter Bowman in London is the landscape architect.

For updates on this and other stories check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Marilyn Baer can be reached at Marilynb@hudsonreporter.com.