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Jackson Lab to Locate in Sarasota County

Jackson Laboratory has announced it will build a new $130-million research facility in Sarasota County, BradentonTimes.com reports.

The project, to be known as The Jackson Laboratory–Florida, will be housed in a 120,000-square-foot facility in Sarasota County and will also occupy laboratories and offices within the University of South Florida Health complex in Tampa. The project is expected to create at least 204 jobs.

“Bringing Jackson Labs to Sarasota County will help us meet our biggest priorities over the next several years,” Nora Patterson, chairwoman of the Sarasota County Commission, said in a statement. “The institute will help diversify our economy while creating hundreds of jobs, making this a landmark investment in the future of Sarasota County.”

As part of the project, the Gulf Coast Community Foundation and other community agencies will spearhead the creation of a major biomedical village, including research, clinical medicine, education, and residential and retail activity, that will grow up around the new Jackson facility, according to a news release.

“Our facility in Sarasota County, coupled with operations on the USF Health campus, will build the collaborations essential to breakthrough discoveries, clinical medicine and educational outreach,” Charles Hewett, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Jackson Laboratory, said. “These collaborations will enrich the entire region.”

USF President Judy Genshaft said USF will make laboratories, offices and research support facilities available to Jackson at nominal cost.

“We are pleased to share our facilities with the Jackson Laboratory,” she said. “This arrangement promotes even closer scientific collaborations, and it lowers the cost to the public.” For months Jackson Lab has been meeting with officials in Sarasota and Hillsborough counties as those two regions were competing for the proposed genetics research lab in partnership with USF.

Jackson Lab originally considered Collier County for its research facility.

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