A $1.3 million federal grant has been awarded to the New Orleans Business Alliance to support the development of wet lab space and a clean room in the Information Technology Center at The Beach at UNO.
The U.S. Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration grant will be matched with $370,000 in local funds and is expected to create 39 jobs, retain 19 jobs and generate $5.1 million in private investment, officials said.
“This EDA investment in the New Orleans Business Alliance will create laboratory space to support growing biotech companies in the region, attracting new businesses and creating a diverse, resilient regional economy,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo.
Wet labs are equipped with plumbing, ventilation and equipment necessary for biology and chemical experiments, while clean rooms are specially designed to be clear of dust and pollutants.
The project was accomplished through the Regional Planning Commission’s Southeast Development District and joint application submitted by the New Orleans Business Alliance and The Beach at UNO, which is managed by the UNO Research & Technology Foundation through public and private partnerships.
“This grant will fund the creation of a much-needed asset, and The Beach at UNO … will provide a strong supportive environment for our new tenants and the operation of the new GMP facility in partnership with the University of New Orleans,” said Rebecca Conwell, president and CEO of The Beach at UNO.
“This is a huge win and example of NOLABA’s impact within our rapidly-growing bio innovation industry,” said Norman E. Barnum IV, interim president and chief executive officer of the business organization.