In mid-2010 the Austin Technology Incubator (ATI) received a grant from the US Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) to determine the feasibility of developing wet-lab space for life-sciences companies in Austin. The ATI study was intended to estimate the demand for wet-lab space in Austin, determine best practices for existing wet-lab facilities, identify costs and potential sites for the lab, and evaluate the overall economic impact of the new facility.
TIP Strategies worked with a consortium of local stakeholders, including the Austin Technology Incubator, City of Austin and the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce to develop the facility feasibility study. Our focus was on market research and site selection. The tasks included an evaluation of the market and a survey of best practices for wet-lab incubators across the US; identification of potential sites; and analysis of the economic impact of the project for the target neighborhood. The final report outlined the findings for the three most promising sites, along with a final development recommendation and supporting selection rationale. The study found that there was a substantial need for wet-lab space in the Austin metro area and provided the background and support to launch an $80 million fundraising initiative to raise capital for a new wet lab incubator.