Rhode Island Innovation Campus

The Executive Office of Commerce, in partnership with the University of Rhode Island (URI), is seeking experienced industry, academic, and research partners to create a transformative Innovation Campus. The Innovation Campus aims to commercialize the world leading research occurring in Rhode Island and position Rhode Island as a center of high value employment.


Please click here to view the Innovation Campus RFP.


The State of Rhode Island, under the leadership of Governor Gina M. Raimondo, is committed to advancing the innovation economy and supporting the creation of new high-skill jobs. In January, 2016, the Brookings Institution published Rhode Island Innovates: A Competitive Strategy for the Ocean State, which details key strategies and priority sectors for advancing Rhode Island’s economy.

In November 2016, Rhode Island voters approved a $20 million bond issue to create an Innovation Campus affiliated with URI that will bring together leading industry, academic, and research partners. The Innovation Campus is envisioned as a facility designed to stimulate collaborative research and development projects among academic and corporate tenants, with the goals of job growth and catalytic statewide impact. The campus pairs world-class, cutting-edge research with proven industry leadership and investment. The inherent value of centers for academic-industry collaboration has been demonstrated at a number of facilities across the country including Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research, Tannery Innovation Center, and The Bridge at Cornell Tech.

The Commerce Corporation is seeking academic, institutional, and industry partners, with interest in opportunities to develop, program, and occupy the Innovation Campus. Development partners will be required to meet or exceed the State’s investment from bond proceeds.


Commerce Corporation and URI

The Commerce Corporation is a quasi-public agency focused on expanding and attracting businesses in and to Rhode Island. The Commerce Corporation provides a variety of services to companies including assistance with commercial real estate, business financing programs, and workforce training. The Commerce Corporation will lead the solicitation process on behalf of the State.

URI is the State of Rhode Island’s public research university and a critical partner in economic development and growth. URI offers 80 undergraduate and 70 graduate programs including leading programs in engineering, health, business, oceanography, and pharmaceutical sciences. Working closely with the Commerce Corporation throughout the solicitation process, URI will collaborate with the designated partner/team to develop and program the Innovation Campus.


Solicitation Process

The Commerce Corporation will initiate a solicitation process later this fall with the release of a Request for Proposals. Activity and discussions related to the Invitation for Expressions of Interest are not part of any Rhode Island Commerce Corporation procurement process.

  • Invitation for expressions of interest issued May 31, 2017
  • Expression of interest questions must be submitted by July 14, 2017
  • Answers to questions will be posted August 4, 2017
  • Expressions of Interest submissions due September 15, 2017
  • Request for Proposals to be issued Fall 2017
  • Responses to Request for Proposals due Winter 2018
  • Commerce Corporation intends to select development partner(s) Spring 2018


About the University of Rhode Island