Clemson University broke ground Tuesday on a new building at the school’s International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR) campus in Greenville.
College President James Clements said the $14 million One Research Drive facility will create more than 200 jobs when it is complete. “This 82,000 square-foot facility will be the newest addition to a vibrant campus that has won international acclaim for bringing together leading researchers, top-notch graduate students, and automotive companies,” he said during a groundbreaking ceremony.
School leaders say part of the new building will be devoted to automotive engineering classroom and lab space. A release from the school said the auto engineering graduate program grew from just 8 students seven years ago to 212 students last year. The school hopes at least 60 percent of the building will eventually be devoted to other tenants that are not directly part of its engineering school.
“Our degrees are in high demand,” Imtiaz Haque, executive director of the Carroll A. Campbell Graduate Engineering Center, said in a statement. “We have far more applicants than we can accept. The additional space will allow us to open our doors to even more students.”
The Clemson University Land Stewardship Foundation is developing the building with help from a $2 million grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration.
Officials say they hope to have new facility up and running by December 2015. Clemson officials said about 700 students, faculty members, and employees work in the part of ICAR’s campus known as Technology Neighborhood One. That population will increase to about 1,000 when One Research Drive is filled.
Ed Jenson contributed to this report