ASU’s SkySong opens with tech-transfer, international tenants

April 3, 2008

By hammersmith

Compiled from media reports

Arizona State University’s SkySong project celebrated its grand opening on March 27, marking completion of the first phase of a Scottsdale mixed-use development that houses several of ASU’s commercialization and technology-transfer programs, as well as numerous local and international companies.

The center, which is being jointly developed by the ASU Foundation, the City of Scottsdale, and several development companies, serves as one of ASU’s approaches to address a critical gap identified in Arizona’s Bioscience Roadmap: limited avenues to translate research conducted at the state’s universities into licenses, patents, and startup firms.

Local elected officials and economic-development proponents, international business leaders, and ASU administrators, faculty, and students gathered at the grand opening to highlight progress on the endeavor, intended to ultimately feature 1.2 million square feet of research, office, and retail space, plus 800 residential units. SkySong is being built on a south Scottsdale site formerly occupied by Los Arcos Mall, about two miles north of ASU’s Tempe campus.

“We are providing the most innovative, fun, and collaborative work environment in Greater Phoenix,” said Julia Rosen, ASU associate vice president for innovation and entrepreneurship, in the East Valley Tribune.

Rosen and other SkySong officials see the project as a way to effectively integrate the university with the local and global marketplace. They are touting opportunities for tenants to engage in collaboration, networking, and technology commercialization with the several ASU programs anchoring the center, including Arizona Technology Enterprises, ASU Technopolis, The Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative, Entrepreneurship at ASU, and the Technology Ventures Clinic.

The project’s first major building, a 157,000 square-foot structure, is now finished and almost completely leased; a second building of similar size, to be finished later this year, is 25 percent leased. Tenants include both startup and established local and international technology-focused firms, from Ticketmaster and an imaging and equipment division of Canon, to a Chinese water-purification company and an Irish software development firm.

ASU president Michael Crow called SkySong a “linkage point” between the university and the international economy. “We have to, in many, ways grow up and evolve to become more of a team member than plowing ahead on our own,” he said in the Business Journal of Phoenix.

For more information:

ASU sets grand opening at SkySong today,” East Valley Tribune, 03/26/2008

ASU, tenants celebrate SkySong,” Arizona Republic, 03/28/2008

SkySong Arizona State University Scottsdale Innovation Center celebrates first building opening,” Business Journal of Phoenix, 03/27/2008