On January 16th British Columbia’s Simon Fraser University opened its brand new Innovation Plaza, home to the recently create Quantum Algorithm Institute (QAI). The QAI is dedicated to creating a community of vendors and emerging talent in quantum computing in British Columbia. Photonic is a charter member and Photonic Chief Quantum Officer Dr. Stephanie Simmons is the chair of the QAI board.
SFU’s newest innovation space opens in downtown Surrey
The SFU Innovation Plaza, a newly-renovated space that is part of SFU’s Surrey campus, is home to the Quantum Algorithms Institute and the B.C. Centre for Agritech Innovation which are now open and operating.
The space will facilitate collaborations between academia, government and industry, accelerate innovation and benefit students preparing for sought-after careers in these burgeoning fields.
The space is also home to Coast Capital Venture Connection, part of SFU’s Charles Chang Institute for Entrepreneurship, SFU’s longest-running entrepreneurship program, and hosts an office of the National Research Council (NRC) Industrial Research Assistance program.
The plaza is a state-of-the-art physical hub that consists of a mix of offices and open seating, meeting rooms and classroom space that overlook the downtown core and the adjacent main campus.
Renovations of the space, officially opened today, were made possible by more than $2 million from the federal government’s Pacific Economic Development Canada (PacifiCan), $1.5 million from SFU and $500,000 from the B.C. Government’s Quantum Algorithms Institute funding.
“We are excited to open this space in the heart of Surrey’s thriving downtown innovation corridor, thanks to the support of government, industry and our academic partners,” says SFU President Joy Johnson. “At the SFU Innovation Plaza, academia, government, and industry will come together to generate new technology solutions that position B.C. as a global leader in innovation. I can’t wait to see what we will build together.”
“On behalf of the Government of Canada, I am proud to celebrate the opening of the Innovation Plaza at Simon Fraser University’s Surrey Campus. This is an example of how we are collaborating with forward-thinking, innovative partners to deliver on our priorities of enhancing innovation, improving business competitiveness and promoting inclusive growth.”
–John Aldag, Member of Parliament for Cloverdale – Langley City on behalf of the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for Pacific Economic Development Canada
“The work being done at the SFU Innovation Plaza is what the StrongerBC Economic Plan is all about – delivering for people a clean and inclusive economy. It represents collaborations that are helping people here at home with better jobs and growing businesses while helping to secure B.C.’s position as a world leader in innovation.”
–B.C. Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Innovation, Brenda Bailey
“The organizations that will fill the quantum computing and agritech clusters at SFU are critical to ensuring B.C. has a leading-edge advantage in agriculture, technology, entrepreneurship and so much more. The knowledge concentrated here will help us all as we move forward with the adoption of new industry innovations that improve lives for British Columbians, and contribute to clean and inclusive growth in a sustainable economy.”
–B.C. Minister of Forests, Bruce Ralston
“The SFU Innovation Plaza is a testament to the university’s leadership and expertise in research, innovation and entrepreneurship. The collaborations that have helped make this space possible are the types of partnerships that we need as we build our knowledge economy, support economic recovery and address climate change.”
–SFU Vice-President, Research and International, Dugan O’Neil