The Texas Life-sciences Collaboration Center in Georgetown announced it will break ground June 27 on a new 15,000-square-foot building.
"In order to move forward with a project like this, we needed the building to be 40 percent pre-leased, and we were able to do that," TLCC Executive Director Michael Douglas said. "These are existing companies in TLCC that are expanding. These are companies moving to the clinical stage."
TLCC will seek a Good Manufacturing Practices certification for the building from the Food and Drug Administration, meaning it could be approved by the FDA to do pharmaceutical development.
The building will be built by Georgetown Rail Equipment Co., which has partnered with TLCC to provide the infrastructure to the collaboration center's member companies and will also include additional wet lab space, according to a news release.
DisperSol Technologies, a TLCC member company, is one of the companies that require the FDA-approved production space as it moves into clinical trials.
The company is developing a method to take non-water soluble medicines that typically must be injected and compound its molecules with water-soluble molecules to allow patients to take the medication orally.
"[This building is] a very, very important step in retaining a company that will deliver real value to Georgetown in terms of a workforce that is generating high wages for taxes and spending those dollars here in Georgetown. These are not minimum-wage jobs but high-wage jobs that are created through the expansion and development of these companies in this kind of space," Douglas said. "Bio manufacturing is new to the area, and one of those [industries] where we hope to create a critical mass in this area to attract other companies."
Douglas said the center's goal is to continue to bring other companies to Georgetown and eventually create a research park concept in Georgetown's southern industrial area.
"We think that Georgetown presents a compelling case not only to grow companies organically but also to recruit like companies from outside the state," Douglas said. "This is actually sort of an intermediate step to a buildout of a research park concept here in the south industrial park area. Hopefully, we would like to attract other biotechnology companies that would want to come and populate our park and bring more high wage jobs to the city."