University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, CT
Transforming an anonymous research building into a magnet for discovery and commercialization
This renovation project transformed an undistinguished, late 1970s pharmaceutical research building into a first-class university research facility centered on quantitative and qualitative approaches to genetics, human stem-cell research, and developmental biology. A major component of the program is an extensive area devoted to the Technology Incubation Program, an initiative managed by the State of Connecticut’s Office of Technology Commercialization, also housed in this building.
The Cell & Genome Sciences Building (CGSB) brings under one roof scientists, start-up companies, and commercialization executives working to turn biotech research into marketable businesses or products. Within less than a year of opening, eight incubator companies had already moved into the center, in the medical device, pharmaceutical, healthcare, software, and technology industries.
- The new facility created by this renovation houses the Center for Cell Analysis and Modeling (CCAM), part of the Department of Genetics and Developmental Biology, the Stem Cell Core facility, and a small-animal vivarium.
- Faculty members include biologists, chemists, biophysicists, mathematicians, theorists, computer scientists, biochemists, and neuroscientists.
- In addition to extensive lab and lab support spaces, specialized equipment includes advanced imaging apparatus, a 120-person auditorium, data center, and a café in the daylit Crossroads.
- Daylight was the organizing principle for the two-acre footprint, and is helping reduce energy use in the building. The original structure was nearly windowless, so one of the primary design goals was to bring daylight into the building by adding windows and skylights.
The incubator area is in high demand, with a waiting list of start-ups seeking to locate here. As a consequence, Goody Clancy was engaged three years after to design a 31,000 GSF expansion of the incubator space.