The Purdue Research Foundation and its private development partner, Indianapolis-based Browning Investments LLC, have unveiled the 30-year master plan for the massive Discovery Park District in West Lafayette. The mixed-use property is expected to include some $1 billion in projects and opportunities for on-campus private investment that Purdue University says will create "a mixed-use gateway for intellectual discourse and commercial partnerships." Officials also detailed the next major component of the development: Convergence, a 145,000 square-foot office building that will serve as a bridge between the university and industry.
Foundation Chief Entrepreneurial Officer Dan Hasler tells Inside INdiana Business the development is a unique "front porch" for the world and the state to enter Purdue and the region. "You don’t see very many things like this spinning up in the country," he said. "It’s the combination of the assets that we think make this really, really special. This is a long-term plan, it’s a long-term investment. You know, we’ve got a 30-year horizon, and because it’s based on other people’s willingness to invest money, our job is to set the palette as best we can. Present the offering to companies and franchises that might want to come in, but it’s them and they — the companies — that are risking their capital and that makes this project very, very different."
Convergence could break ground later this year and join the $86 million Aspire project, which is already underway and could be complete in August of 2019. Additional components of the master plan include:
- The "District Core" – a center and social hub for innovation with uses including coworking, office, lab and maker spaces
- Main Street – a corridor to connect State Street and Airport Road that will be pedestrian, bike and transit-friendly and include retail space
- A residential village that would include mostly single-family townhomes, cottages and detached houses
- "Squirrel Park" with park spaces, recreational areas and pedestrian paths
- A Residential Village with single-family housing
- Aerospace District – a university-affiliated aerospace business hub for companies to collaborate on research and commerce
Hasler adds "we are building off the State Street Redevelopment Project and the outstanding research that is conducted in Discovery Park. We recognize that the Discovery Park District is the next step in the evolution of Purdue University as the place to go for intellectual challenge and innovation advancement. The district will provide the necessary amenities to bring current and future leaders of academics and business together."
Purdue Research Foundation Chief Entrepreneurial Officer Dan Hasler tells Inside INdiana Business the development is a unique “front porch” for the world and the state to enter Purdue and the region.