In order to position New York as a global leader in the area of “smart cities” technology, last month the SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) acquired the landmark Kiernan Plaza in downtown Albany.
The $30 million CNSE-led initiative was a priority project by Governor Cuomo’s Capital Region Economic Development Council.
“The transformation of Kiernan Plaza into the Smart Cities Technology Innovation Center will provide an innovative platform enabling groundbreaking research, education, and workforce training for emerging smart cities technologies,” Governor Andrew Cuomo said.
Smart cities technologies include smart devices, sensors and computer chips, integrated systems, and operating software that collect and analyze data for monitoring highway conditions and improving traffic flow; protect vital infrastructure, such as bridges, data centers and utility installations; safeguard facilities, including wastewater treatment plants; and provide e-safety security in educational settings.
CNSE was awarded $4 million as a part of Governor Cuomo’s Regional Council initiative to support the purchase. The Smart Cities Technology Innovation Center (SCiTI) will leverage the CREDC funding to generate an additional $26 million in private sector support, leading to the creation and retention of 250 high-tech jobs in downtown Albany.
Additionally, CNSE will collaborate with Trinity Alliance of the Capital Region and Girls Inc. of the Greater Capital Region to develop and deliver joint nanotechnology education and workforce training programs, many of which will benefit young people from urban environments and communities whose citizens are traditionally underrepresented in the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields.