Monday August 24, 2009

Tech Town's Grand Opening

A high-flying technology display helped celebrate the opening of Tech Town and inaugurate new space for the district's anchor tenant, the University-led Institute for Development and Commercialization of Advanced Sensor Technology.

Drivers and pedestrians in downtown Dayton may have seen what looked like an abnormally high-flying kite Monday, Aug. 31. It was actually an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) floating hundreds of feet above taking pictures with resolution comparable to any computer screen.

The UAV demonstration was the finale to the grand opening of the first of 10 buildings — the Creative Technology Accelerator — to be built at Tech Town near the corner of Taylor and Monument streets in downtown Dayton. Tech Town is the Dayton region's technology-oriented district, whose first tenant is the University of Dayton-led Institute for Development and Commercialization of Advanced Sensor Technology.

"The University of Dayton IDCAST is pleased to be the anchor tenant," University of Dayton President Daniel J. Curran said at the grand opening. "We are certainly looking forward to the future. We have lab space and test beds for research. We have world-class intellectual capital. The University will be a key collaborator as we move forward."

IDCAST is a center of excellence in chemical and biological sensing technology established by a $28 million State of Ohio Third Frontier Grant to bring remote sensor and sensor technology to market through collaborations among Ohio universities, the U.S. Air Force and industry. In two and a half years, IDCAST has help start three companies and 250 jobs. Sensors and remote sensing technology have applications for the military, homeland security and surveillance and in detecting biological weapons, among others.

"The community is fortunate to have the University of Dayton," Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland said as he acknowledged Curran and the University's support for Tech Town.

The Creative Technology Accelerator is a 42,000-square-foot facility. The Dayton RFID Convergence Center and Weston Solutions also will occupy the building.

"After nearly a decade of planning, the vision of transitioning an unproductive brownfield into a center for Dayton's economic revitalization is finally a reality," U.S. Rep. Michael Turner said. "Downtown Dayton is open for business as an emerging center for IT and high-tech companies."

CityWide Development Corporation manages the Tech Town project. Construction on Tech Town's second building, a 70,000-square-foot structure, will begin in early 2010.

For more information, contact Shawn Robinson, associate director of media relations, at 937-229-3391 or srobinson@udayton.edu.