City, LADWP Officials Break Ground
|LOS ANGELES — Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and City of Los Angeles and LADWP officials broke ground on the La Kretz Innovation Campus at a ceremony and green festival marking the occasion yesterday. Located in the Arts District area of downtown Los Angeles, the planned facility is envisioned to serve as a clean industry hub for entrepreneurs, engineers, scientists and policymakers to interact and promote the development of clean technologies and Los Angeles’ green economy.
The project represents the collaborative efforts of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) and the former Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Los Angeles (CRA/LA), the EDA’s Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance program, as well as other city groups and organizations.
“The La Kretz Innovation Campus and the L.A. Cleantech Incubator will be the destination where entrepreneurs, engineers, scientists, and policymakers will collaborate on clean technology development and support Los Angeles’ ever-growing green economy,” said Mayor Villaraigosa.
The complex will feature offices, conference rooms, an event space, research laboratories, a prototype manufacturing workshop, and classrooms in a fully renovated 60,000 square-foot building. The campus’ outdoor public space will include a new park and surface parking lots that will be shaded by a photovoltaic solar canopy system. The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) will serve as the anchor tenant on the campus and the facility will also house LADWP’s Energy Efficiency Technology and Customer Engagement Centers.
“We look forward to working alongside our partners at the La Kretz Innovation Campus as we aggressively expand our energy efficiency programs to help our customers save energy and money, transition out of coal, increase our use of renewable energy and create a clean energy future for L.A.,” said Ron Nichols, LADWP General Manager. “It will be a place where new technology and equipment can be developed and tested- technology that will help us go further, faster and more efficiently as our Power System continues to evolve.”
The key goals of La Kretz Innovation Campus include being a focal point for a cluster of new clean energy technology businesses that can compete globally, while benefiting the local economy. The center is poised to provide leadership in fostering innovative solutions for clean energy technology in the second largest city with the largest municipal utility in the nation.
“The L.A. Cleantech Incubator will be able to help grow up to 25 companies with the potential to generate 600 direct and 1,100 indirect permanent jobs, and over $85 Million in sales over the next five years,” said Fred Walti, Executive Director, LACI.
The 3.2 acre campus is to be located at 5th and Hewitt Streets in the Cleantech Corridor and Arts District of downtown Los Angeles. It will be in a designated Enterprise Zone, targeted for economic development and job creation to stimulate the local economy. The project will help revitalize a low-income community and two U.S. Census-certified distressed tracts.