Life Science Park scheduled to break ground in July

The University of Miami will break ground in July on a new Life Science Park located near the Miller School of Medicine.

The planned multi-use facility will house both established and start-up companies that are partnering with UM scientists and doctors.

UM expects the park to have a significant economic and scientific impact in South Florida. The predicted result of this project includes the creation of 4,531 new jobs and an approximate $253 million annual economic output.

The South Florida Business Journal has reported that the South Florida Proton Center has already signed a letter of intent to install a cancer-blasting proton beam in one building in the park. This rare device, which can cost upwards of $85 million, can dramatically improve the treatment of cancer patients.

The park will include a rain garden canopy, which will be cooled by a 60-foot waterfall, an initiative that will make the project a contender for an award from the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).

The Life Science Park will also have street level retail and residences for scientists and other researchers.

Dr. Bart Chernow, the vice-president of special programs and vice provost of technology advancement at the Miller School of Medicine, hopes to bring in professionals from Latin America and Europe.

The Miller School of Medicine already has partnerships with Oxford and Cambridge.

Ultimately, the Life Science Park will include a total of 6 buildings encompassing 2-million square feet of space. The opening of the first building is planned for early 2011.