$142 Million Released for Job Creation and Economic Growth in Illinois


Published on November 18 2020 2:49 pm
Last Updated on November 18 2020 2:49 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

Governor Pritzker Wednesday announced the release of more than $142 million to launch new facilities for the Discovery Partners Institute and Illinois Innovation Network, created to accelerate job creation and economic growth through education, research and discovery.

The project will include network facilities and other projects at five public university campuses, including the U of I and Eastern Illinois University.

State funds were released including $1 million for EIU's East-Central Illinois Hub of the Illinois Innovation Network. The EIU hub will address issues of environment, economic development, entrepreneurship, visualization of community-based assets and infrastructure assessments, rural social systems and community sustainability.

Also included is $14 million for design of the Altgeld Hall/Illini Hall project at the U of I. The new Illini Hall will house a data science center that will be key component of the Innovation Network's Urbana-Champaign hub, while the Altgeld Hall interior will be replaced while the historic exterior is retained. The initiative is designed to create a major research and education center for Big Data science and analytics at UIUC, while connecting the university's data scientists with business, industry and the community.

DPI and IIN are expected to create or fill 48,000 new-economy jobs over the next decade, and the initiatives are expected to have an economic impact of $19 billion over the next 10 years.