ISU research park to build Alliant Energy agriculture innovation lab

Rendering of inside the future Alliant Energy Agriculture Innovation Lab at the Iowa State University Research Park. CREDIT IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY RESEARCH PARK.

The Iowa State University Research Park (ISURP) and Alliant Energy announced on March 23 a new multi-tenant collaboration space to be built at ISURP this summer. 

The Alliant Energy Agriculture Innovation Lab will provide more than 85,000-square-feet for ISU’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ Digital Ag Innovation team. The lab will also house agriculture-based business tenants to access technology, research, development and each other for innovation opportunities focused on digital and precision agriculture.

“This project is the latest in our long-standing partnership with Alliant Energy,” said Rick Sanders, ISURP president, in a release. “Our mutual goal, to invest and innovate in the agriculture industry, will take a significant step forward in this collaborative new building. It will afford us the opportunity to create an epicenter of agricultural innovation here in the Midwest.”

Expected to be completed by fall 2024, the lab will pair collaborative office and agricultural workshop space to allow for an innovative work environment. Over 70% of the building will feature high bay and lab space.

“Alliant Energy is proud to partner with Iowa State University and Iowa State University Research Park to advance innovative research through this forward-thinking and strategic project,” said John Larsen, Alliant Energy chairman and CEO, in a release. “Creating space for the emergence of cutting-edge technology and collaboration opportunities in agriculture innovation will help build stronger communities across Iowa, the Midwest and beyond.”

The facility will contain space for companies engaged in collaborative work with the Digital Agriculture Innovation team. It will also include an atrium and shared conferencing spaces to encourage collaboration between stakeholders.

The research team, led by Iowa State professor Matt Darr, is responsible for more than 50% of industry research at Iowa State. The team boasts more than 70 patents and distinct tech transfer outcomes as well as 32 products sold globally that impact agriculture daily. 

This accounts for significant external investment in Iowa through federal and industry partnerships and the support and creation of more than 300 agriculture technology jobs.

The lab will be located on ISURP land south of the Ames Fitness Center on University Boulevard.

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