Innovation District for Science & Technology
The Texas Research and Technology Foundation is continuing its mission of affecting economic development in the life science and technology sectors. TRTF undertook the rehabilitation of the Merchant’s Ice site on the Near Eastside of San Antonio in 2017 with the mission to establish the VelocityTX Innovation Center and Innovation District for Science and Technology. Phase I of the rehabilitation included the VelocityTX Innovation Center and regenerative medicine manufacturer Gencure, a subsidiary of BioBridge Global who moved into their facilities in February 2020. Phase II is planned to begin construction in Q3 of 2020.
Future rehabilitation phases planned for the historic site include a medical research facility, an event center, additional office space, green space and a collision center intended as a gathering place for all. An independent economic impact analysis projects the center will ultimately support over 700 jobs and will produce $736 million in increased economic activity in the area between 2019 and 2023. The $220 million project is estimated to be completed in seven years. It has received financial assistance from local and federal incentive programs.
The proximity of the site to the urban core provides an opportunity to further shape San Antonio’s economy by creating a broader Innovation District for Science & Technology on the Near Eastside. TRTF aims to bring together economic, physical and networking assets of the bioscience ecosystem into a dynamic and amenity-rich environment. The growth of this innovation culture will build the City’s global competitiveness and result in inclusive growth in employment and educational opportunities for the community. The Innovation District for Science & Technology will drive broad-based prosperity in the bioscience ecosystem, commercial activity, improved open spaces and infrastructure designed to stimulate new levels of connectivity, collaboration, and innovation.