Guest Column

Guest Column

by admin, March 14, 2019


The New Jersey Innovation Institute (NJII) was created to be an economic development driver for New Jersey. Since our inception we have invested deeply in partnerships between industry and public partners with the goal of helping our region to become more diversified and competitive.

We started with NJ MarketShift that mapped the state’s aerospace and defense supply chain. Next, NJII introduced new models for digital healthcare records and created the NJ Health Information Network (NJHIN) partnership with the state of New Jersey. There have been innumerable partnerships and enterprise expansion activities since then.

In fall of 2018, NJII embarked on a new mission by partnering with Atlantic County to launch the National Aerospace Research and Technology Park (NARTP). This project is envisioned as the center of an aerospace hub that will engage the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Tech Center, the Atlantic City International Airport as a smart airport test bed, the Joint Base M-D-L research labs, and numerous companies and applied research universities, including our own New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT). This consortium of partners will work together to advance applied research, training and workforce development, and the creation of new high paying jobs.

The partnership is led by NJII Director of Regional Operations and Partnerships (Southern Region) Frank Leibowitz, formerly a project manager and engineer with the Department of Homeland Security, Transportation Security Lab situated at the FAA Tech Center. Frank has seamlessly integrated his technical expertise with an interest in economic development and collaboration.

In order to house this work, NARTP offers a campus style technology park of seven planned buildings. The first one is already leased out and a second is being planned. The sleek, open design of the physical space reflects the cutting edge collaborations NJII nurtures and says great things happen here.

NJII plans to facilitate open innovation activities that will bring industry and FAA experts, military, and academia together to solve real challenges. The first open innovation activity will be sponsored by Lockheed Martin in Moorestown and center on cyber security. Regional Aviation STEM initiatives for elementary, high school, vocational schools, and community colleges will also find a home base in the NARTP workspace. There will even be a flight simulator installed for the use of our partners.

This is an exciting time for economic growth in southern New Jersey, as aerospace activity across the region will find a dynamic headquarters at the NARTP. NJII is honored to power this progress in economic development!

Ian Trammell

NJII Associate Vice President

Office of Economic, Cluster and Client Development