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Research zone receives $20M funding; sign unveiled at construction site


Toronto, ON April 22, 2003 The Medical and Related Sciences (MaRS) Discovery District had its official sign unveiled at its construction site in downtown Toronto today. In addition, the Ontario government announced it has earmarked a C$20 million contribution to the centre which is expected to cost $345 million in total.

The MaRS Discovery District will be a research and development centre that will bring researchers and life sciences companies under one roof, combining the scientific and the business communities. The centre will promote the growth of research-intensive companies and the successful commercialization of academic research by clustering a critical mass of researchers and scientists with business and support services.

At its location in downtown Toronto, researchers will have convenient access to the surrounding research hospitals and facilities, as well as the University of Toronto.

The MaRS Discovery District will incorporate links to regional clusters that have complementary strengths in the area of medical-agricultural science. A pilot project is currently under development with the City of Guelph and the University of Guelph.

The MaRS Centre will be developed in two phases over four years (from 2003 to 2007). Over 1.3 million sq ft will ultimately be available for multi-use capacity.

Phase 1 will include three buildings to house publicly sponsored research, medium-sized companies in life sciences, information technology and other related disciplines, the Toronto Biotechnology Commercialization Centre, a scientific services centre, a professional services centre, executive business centre, related business services, venture capital businesses, early-stage science and technology businesses, and retail operations.

Phase 2 will include the construction of a 620,000 sq ft facility for companies ready to move from the incubation phase, established firms engaged in life sciences, information technology and other related disciplines, and professional firms that support such activities.