On Wednesday, the state announced that it has approved Binghamton University’s (BU) NYSUNY 2020 challenge grant.  Binghamton’s proposal included two major objectives: construction of a $70 million, state-of-the-art Smart Energy Research and Development Facility and the addition of 2,000 students, 150 faculty and 175 professional and support staff to develop new and strengthen existing academic programs.

This is a tremendous development for the university, and for the region as a whole.  It will have a tremendous long-term economic impact, while making BU an even better academic and research institution.

BU will receive $35 million in capital construction funds for the energy facility and be able to implement a new tuition plan that will enable the hiring of new researchers and faculty, expansion of academic offerings and facilities, development of public/private research partnerships and expansion of technology development in high-tech fields.

Gov. Cuomo said:

“The Binghamton University plan will maximize the economic impact that one of New York’s most prominent university centers has on the Empire State.  I look forward to seeing the plan in action, as Binghamton University creates jobs on campus and throughout the Southern Tier, enhances New York’s energy-smart infrastructure and alternative energy research portfolio, and gives more students access to a top quality public higher education that is second to none in the nation and around the world.”

The new energy research and development facility is expected to create 840 new full-time jobs by 2017, and to annually attract $7 million in additional funding for energy research.