By this time next year, Chapel Hill will have an innovation hub that will attract folks looking for UNC-Chapel Hill’s innovative research and entrepreneurial activity, as well as links to community partners and firms coming to town.
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill took a big step toward launching a full-fledged innovation hub this week when the UNC Board of Governors approved the university’s lease for approximately 20,000 square feet of space in the Grubb Properties-renovated and reimagined building at 136 East Rosemary Street in downtown Chapel Hill. Innovate Carolina, UNC-Chapel Hill’s central team that provides strategic guidance, practical tools and resources to support people and organizations on campus and in the community who make an economic and social impact through innovation, entrepreneurship, and economic development, will be based in the University’s innovation hub. Other life science and high-tech firms will be housed in the building, opening up new prospects for academic-industry collaboration.
The hub at UNC-Chapel Hill will include a startup accelerator, co-working space, and collaborative business environment for industry and community partners, as well as UNC-Chapel Hill’s programs that promotes innovation, entrepreneurship, and its research-to-market pipeline. The hub will allow multinational firms’ innovation centers to collaborate with Carolina researchers and link with the university’s enormous pool of innovation talent to develop cross-functional solutions to commercial and societal concerns. The center will be used by startups, small companies, organizations, corporations, and investors to collaborate closely on new enterprises, goods, services, and technology with students, teachers, and innovators. In the second quarter of 2023, this space is planned to open. Innovate Carolina is now collecting expressions of interest from businesses and people interested in becoming members of the hub through individual subscriptions and program memberships.