Business & Economy
1:18 pm
Mon February 3, 2014

Big Changes On The Way For Research Triangle Park

Josh Dunbar and Zachary Lyon of Falcon Engineering look at new plans for RTP.
Josh Dunbar and Zachary Lyon of Falcon Engineering look at new plans for RTP.
Credit Leoneda Inge

The Research Triangle Foundation has announced plans for a major expansion - its first mixed-use development project since the park opened. In a matter of weeks, 100 acres of prime real estate in RTP became available. The Research Triangle Foundation scooped it up at a price tag of $17 million dollars.

Bob Geolas is President and CEO of the foundation: "Look it's a big idea, it's a big vision. As RTP was itself 50 years ago." Geolas says that big idea will become Park Center - a mix of residential, cafes, business and retail.

"We are going to seize the moment and run with it." - Bob Geolas

"You know what, you always think you could have started something sooner.  But, the truth is, I believe we are doing it at just the right time. The economy is turning, our universities are excited, the people are ready to see change, so we are going to seize the moment and run with it," Geolas notes.

"We've not taken this kind of position in 40 years, probably since the park opened.  This is a big investment for us, it's a change for us. But we believe it's important to make sure the park remains a great leader for the country and a great leader in the world for innovation."

Currently, Research Triangle Park covers 7,000 acres and houses 170 companies and organizations including IBM and NetApp.

Here's a link to a map that puts the acquisition in context.

The Triangle Business Journal blog says the expansion could lead to 100,000 new jobs.