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The Scripps Research Institute Breaks Ground for Construction of Scripps Florida Campus in Palm Beach County

Project marks new era for Institute and advances Florida's science and biotechnology future

PALM BEACH COUNTY, FL, September 23, 2005—The Scripps Research Institute breaks ground today in Palm Beach County for construction of its 100-acre Scripps Florida campus, dedicated to advanced biomedical research and the application of the latest technologies in drug discovery.

This first phase of development, including construction of three buildings totaling 350,000 square feet of laboratory and research support facilities, is scheduled for completion in late 2007. The buildings will ultimately provide work space for a minimum of 545 employees. Scripps Florida is currently operating with 154 staff at temporary facilities on the Florida Atlantic University campus in Jupiter.

Florida Governor Jeb Bush, Scripps Research President Richard A. Lerner, M.D., the Palm Beach County Commissioners, and Marshall Criser, head of the state's Scripps Florida Funding Corporation, will gather at the former orange grove known as Mecca Farms, now part of the Palm Beach County Research Village, off Northlake Boulevard and Seminole Pratt Whitney Road, at noon today to turn over the first shovelful of soil.

The scene will be closed-circuit telecast to a group of some 250 staff and friends of Scripps Florida at the PGA National Resort and Spa in Palm Beach Gardens. The Governor, Dr. Lerner, and County Commission Chairman Tony Masilotti will deliver remarks to the guests shortly after returning from the groundbreaking site.

The Scripps Florida campus is the Institute's only facility outside of its headquarters in La Jolla, California, a part of the City of San Diego.

"Today begins a new era for The Scripps Research Institute," said Dr. Lerner. "We take this opportunity to rededicate ourselves to the betterment of human health through our research, to fulfilling the Governor's vision that Scripps Florida will serve as the foundation for a world-class biomedical cluster in Florida, and to helping meet the County Commission's goals of bringing new jobs, educational opportunities, and businesses to this community and the region."

"Today's groundbreaking exemplifies the dynamic synergy and shared vision that exists between The Scripps Research Institute and Florida to lead the global effort in curing disease and improving human health," said Governor Jeb Bush.  "I thank The Scripps Research Institute, the Florida Legislature, and the people of Florida for their unwavering commitment to Scripps Florida.  I am truly excited about what the future holds for Florida in the realm of life sciences, particularly as we surge forward in biomedical research, advanced technologies, and discovery."

Today's groundbreaking marks a milestone in a process that began in October 2003 when Governor Bush and Dr. Lerner announced that Scripps Research would expand in Florida.

Subsequently, the Florida State Legislature appropriated $310 million to the Scripps Florida Funding Corporation for the Institute's start-up costs, initial staffing, and scientific equipment purchases, made available to Scripps Research on request through 2010. Several jurisdictions were then invited to propose incentive packages to attract the research facilities to their communities and the Institute selected the offer of Palm Beach County for 100 acres of land and funds to cover the building cost of this first phase of the Scripps Florida campus, approximately $137 million.  Adjoining properties have been reserved by the County for the Palm Beach County Research Village, future home of biotech and pharmaceutical organizations, commercial interests, and residences.

The initial construction phase of the Scripps Florida campus will include three buildings-the Drug Discovery Building (99,000 square feet), Advanced Technologies/Administration Building (119,000 square feet), and Molecular/Biomedical Research Development Building (132,000 square feet) on approximately 44 acres of the 100-acre site. 

The Drug Discovery Building will house high through-put screening robots, nuclear magnetic resonance instruments, and biology and chemistry laboratories. The Advanced Technologies/Administration Building will include laboratories devoted to genomics and proteomics, biology, bioinformatics and research computing, and electron microscopy labs, as well as administrative offices, a food service area, a library, an auditorium, and classrooms.  The Molecular/Biomedical Research Development Building will house the infectology and neurobiology departments, and additional biology laboratories.

Surrounded by lawns, the buildings will be connected by paved walkways, leading to a terrace. The site will overlook a 20 acre lake adjoining the campus.

The project was designed by Zeidler Partnership/Bohlin Cywinski Jackson: Architects in Joint Venture and construction is being managed by The Weitz Company/DPR Construction in Joint Venture. The program manager is Fluor Corporation.

Scripps Florida is currently operating in a 44,000 square-foot building on the campus of Florida Atlantic University in Jupiter. A second building, totaling 30,000 square feet, will be completed in 2006 for Scripps Florida use until construction of the permanent campus is completed. These buildings will be turned over to the university when Scripps Florida moves to its new campus in late 2007.


Scripps Florida Campus Statistics:

Total acres: 100 acres north of Northlake Boulevard and east of Seminole Pratt Whitney Road in Palm Beach County. Formerly known as Mecca Farms, now part of the 1,900-acre Palm Beach County Research Village.

Building size:

Drug Discovery  99,000 square feet
Advanced Technologies/ Administration  119,000 square feet
Molecular/Biomedical Research Development  132,000 square feet
Total  350,000 square feet
Laboratory modules: 92 possible

Total Cost: $137 Million

Acres developed in first phase:  44 acres

Lake: 20 acres (not included in campus)

Completion date of first phase: late 2007

Project Description:

Drug Discovery Building
High Through-Put Screening Robotics
NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) Labs
Biology and Chemistry Laboratories

Advance Technologies/Administration
Genomics and Proteomics Laboratories
Biology Laboratories
BioInformatics and Research Computing
Electron Microscopy Laboratories
Food Service/Dining
Auditorium and classrooms
Library
Administrative Offices

Molecular/Biomedical Research Development
Infectology Laboratories
Neurobiology Laboratories
Biology Laboratories

Architect: In Joint Venture
Zeidler Partnership
Bohlin Cywinski Jackson

Construction Manager: In Joint Venture
The Weitz Company
DPR Construction

Program Manager:
Fluor Corporation


For more information contact:
Office of Communications
10550 North Torrey Pines Road
La Jolla, California 92037

press@scripps.edu