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AN INNOVATION CENTRE FOR SALMON ARM!


Friday, November 10, 2017
Business Services

  

Recognizing the exciting growth trends in the technology sector province wide and in an effort to strengthen the local economy, SAEDS has identified an industry-led and industry-supported Salmon Arm solution to the challenge of building upon our community's existing technology cluster. SAEDS is currently working towards the establishment of the Salmon Arm Innovation Centre at 220 Shuswap Street NE in early 2018.

The project will be developed in a phased approach inclusive of three distinct, but linked and co-located, services:

1.       A community makerspace

2.       A business accelerator program

3.       A co-working space

The vision of the Salmon Arm Innovation Centre is to promote rural technology sector growth and to enhance Salmon Arm's start-up climate, while creating a leading best-practice example of a self-sustaining, small-community Innovation Centre. 

In 2016, SAEDS partnered with Community Futures Shuswap to conduct an Innovation Centre Feasibility Study to assess the various components of the centre, including community demand, financial feasibility, governance, and optimal location.  Brent Moffat, Vice-Chairperson of the SAEDS Board explains, “the outcome of the study revealed strong support from industry as well as extensive community demand for the makerspace and related tech programming. 

The completed feasibility study was reviewed by the SAEDS Board in early May 2017 and a decision was made to move forward with the Salmon Arm Innovation Centre.  In support of this project, SAEDS recently received funding approval from the BC Rural Dividend Fund for two years' pilot funding to support the development of our Innovation Centre. 

A crucial step in moving forward with this project has been obtaining input from various stakeholders, including industry and government, to help guide the centre design and program offerings to ensure the future success of the Innovation Centre both in growing our local technology cluster and in meeting the needs of local industry and residents.  Stay tuned for more information on this exciting community project!

 
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