Board of Regents approves expansion of STAR One research building

Posted by Jayme Blaschke
University News Service
February 19, 2015

The Texas State University System Board of Regents has authorized Texas State University to expand the STAR One research building in the Science, Technology and Advanced Research (STAR) Park.

The board, meeting Feb. 19 in Austin, also approved the companion Lab Finish-Out project

The combined projects propose a 16,000-square-foot addition to the existing STAR One building, to include flexible wet lab and office spaces. The proposed labs will support the needs of a broad range of users requiring chemistry, materials and life sciences lab space to advance a business, product or concept. A conference room, large multipurpose room, leasable offices and an open collaborative space are also included.

"Texas State’s STAR Park already has proven to be a very popular destination for new and innovative companies in central Texas, which has led the university to expand its STAR One facility to house more of these clients," said Texas State Provost Gene Bourgeois. "Future economic development in the greater San Marcos area stands to be significantly enhanced by business activity generated at an expanded STAR Park."

Currently, STAR One is a 20,000-square-foot facility of which 14,000 square feet are fully built out and at full occupancy. Active research areas include material sciences (semiconductors, nanomaterials, advanced polymers), life sciences (drug delivery, diagnostics, advanced DNA analysis, medical devices, medical implants), advanced manufacturing (complex design and prototyping, microelectronics, lighting products, robotics), software platforms for a variety of applications and renewable energy.

The remaining 6,000 square feet of shell space will be built out by summer 2015. The newly-approved expansion will potentially allow STAR One research to extend to new fields.

Bill Covington, associate vice president for research and director of federal relations, and Steve Frayser, executive director of STAR Park, will consult academic interests on campus to identify potential discipline-related areas of interest for attracting innovative, budding companies in STAR One and future buildings at STAR Park. Any new areas of exploration must be linked with Texas State's research strengths, including emerging Ph.D. programs.

Future interdisciplinary research opportunities may include:

  • The Internet of Things (materials, analytics, devices and energy)
  • GIS/Geospatial tools (remote sensing, physical and social environment modeling)
  • Computer engineering (systems design, management tools, security)
  • Water and the environment (membranes, sensors, analytical tools)
  • Advance educational tools (distributed learning, virtual learning environments)
  • Textiles design integrating material science and prototyping tools
  • Management tools enabling better healthcare delivery (medical records, inventory, clinical practice devices)
  • Advanced infrastructure materials (new composite concrete and application opportunities)

The expected cost is $8 million for the expansion and $2 million for the lab finish-out. The combined projects will be financed by $10 million in Texas State University System Revenue Financing System Bonds.   

About STAR Park

STAR Park is a collaborative effort of Texas State University and research partners serving as a catalyst for continued public/private development of new or improved technologies. Anchored by the STAR One technology business incubator, the 58-acre STAR Park is currently home to five new and emerging technology companies, a soon-to-be-opened advanced polymers and nanomaterials center, Texas State's Small Business Development Center and the Office of Commercialization and Industry Relations.