Speaking at NJ hub groundbreaking, provost underlines Princeton commitment to robust, inclusive innovation ecosystem

Thursday, Oct 21, 2021
by Jonathan Garaffa

Government, industry and university leaders came together in downtown New Brunswick on October 14th for the groundbreaking of the new research, education and innovation center known as “The Hub.” Set to complete its first phase of construction in 2024, The Hub will be a new collaborative site designed to foster research, entrepreneurship, innovation, and start-up incubation in New Jersey. The Hub was announced by Governor Murphy in November 2020.

“Innovation is in our state’s DNA,” Murphy told the audience at the groundbreaking. “It is a legacy we are not going to walk away from. The Hub will be a place that lives up to New Brunswick’s nickname as the ‘Hub City.’ Arguably no other research center will have such firepower in a single space.”

Princeton University Provost Deborah A. Prentice also spoke at the groundbreaking. “Princeton is committed to developing a robust and inclusive innovation ecosystem throughout the central New Jersey area that welcomes and benefits from the perspectives of New Jersey’s diverse residents,” Prentice told the audience.

Princeton will serve as one of The Hub’s first institutional tenants, along with core partners Rutgers University, RWJBarnabas Health, and Hackensack Meridian Health. Princeton’s Vice Dean for Innovation Rodney Priestley also joined Governor Murphy, Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway, and the leaders of RWJBarnabas Health and Hackensack Meridian Health for the virtual announcement of The Hub back in November of last year.

The first phase of The Hub will feature the construction of two buildings. One building will be a new, state-of-the-art facility for the Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, which is being relocated to The Hub. Another building will have a lab space called the Rutgers Translational Research Facility, which will host 700 to 800 medical and life science researchers. This building will also host the New Jersey Innovation & Technology Hub, a space for private companies looking to translate the researchers’ ideas into commercial products and applications.

The second phase of The Hub will consist of a third building hosting tenants from the life science ecosystem, including biotech, pharma and medical device companies. Officials hope the second phase will commence before the first phase is completed.

“This groundbreaking project will expand the synergy and creative energy between academic and private sector science, resulting in a stronger and fairer New Jersey economy,” said President of the New Brunswick Development Corporation (Devco) Christopher Paladino in a promo video for The Hub.

The State of New Jersey’s investment in the first phase of The Hub totals $665 million.

Read more about the groundbreaking of The Hub in the original ROI-NJ feature article, and watch a recap video of the groundbreaking event on YouTube.