The State announces its support to 4 regional coalitions for the $ 1 billion Build Back Better Challenge

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Gov. Phil Murphy and the New Jersey Economic Development Authority have announced their support for four regional coalition nominations for the Build Back Better Regional Challenge, a billion dollar grant program announced by the US Economic Development Administration in conjunction with the plan American rescue.

The EDA will join forces with regional industrial clusters built around bioproduction, clean energy, aviation and smart ports. (The EDA will be hosting a webinar on applicants at 9:00 am Tuesday. Watch here.)

The regional Build Back Better Challenge will fund projects that create high-quality jobs, increase wages and revitalize communities in places that have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications should be focused on the development or growth of a regional industrial cluster, with a long-term transformational vision and execution plan.

If selected, applicants could potentially receive up to $ 100 million in aid for their projects.

Here are the four candidates who received support from the EDA:

The Aviation Innovation Coalition

This coalition, led by Atlantic County and the Atlantic County Economic Alliance, focuses on intelligent aviation and aerospace in southern Jersey, including advanced air mobility, advanced air cargo, and unmanned air systems. The coalition is considering infrastructure construction projects, including a vertiport and a droneport; airspace planning; manpower training programs; micro-grants for under-represented youth to develop aviation innovations and businesses; and study programs for regional high schools and colleges focused on UAS and AAM.

Individuals and organizations wishing to share project ideas or join the Aviation Innovation Coalition should contact [email protected] by September 28 at noon.

The Biofabrication Coalition

This coalition, led by Rutgers University, focuses on advanced pharmaceutical manufacturing and the development of new, more efficient ways of producing drugs to reduce reliance on overseas drug manufacturing and to shorten supply chains to help patients. The coalition is also working to train an expanded workforce on new and unique manufacturing processes, enabling digital design of products and processes, accelerating the development of pharmaceuticals and manufacturing processes, and developing processes. real-time quality assurance.

This coalition leverages existing physical, educational and talent assets in the Northeast Corridor including the NJ BioScience Center, New Brunswick Innovation HUB, BioCentriq at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, major research institutions, community colleges and large biopharmaceutical companies headquartered in New Jersey. .

Individuals and organizations interested in sharing project ideas or joining the Biofabrication Coalition should contact [email protected] by September 28 at noon.

The Clean Energy Coalition

This coalition, led by Rowan University, includes several other higher education partners and thought leaders in the field of clean energy. It aims to build on the Murphy’s administration’s investments in decarbonizing the state’s economy by developing New Jersey’s clean energy sector – particularly offshore wind, clean transportation, energy storage and smart grid technologies. The coalition is considering infrastructure projects, workforce training and business acceleration efforts to support the clean energy manufacturing supply chain.

Individuals and organizations interested in sharing project ideas or joining the Clean Energy Coalition should contact [email protected] by September 28 at noon.

The Regional Coalition of Smart Ports

This coalition is led by the City of Newark in partnership with the NJIT and other partners, including the Port Newark Container Terminal, Invest Newark and the North Jersey Transportation Authority. It focuses on optimizing ports in the greater Newark area to expand regional economic impact and stimulate large-scale job creation. The coalition will focus on innovative transport systems, including industrial projects of advanced technologies for freight transport, clean energy, data analysis and secure IT systems, supply chain improvements, workforce development, facility design and an online real estate market for related businesses outside the port.

Individuals and organizations interested in sharing project ideas or joining the Smart Ports Coalition should contact [email protected] by September 28 at noon.

The Build Back Better challenge is a two-phase competition. Here is how it will work:

  • Applicants as a regional coalition with one lead entity per application. Eligible coalition members include government entities, nonprofits, and higher education institutions. For-profit entities cannot be a coalition lead candidate, but can participate as “coalition partners” offering industry expertise, engaging in investment or job creation related to the industrial cluster and officially express their support for the coalition’s candidacy.
  • Interested regions should form coalitions of eligible entities and collaborate to develop a proposal that outlines a vision for the development or expansion of one or more new or existing regional industries, as well as a set of 3 to 8 potential projects. that support this vision. Proposals are due by October 19;
  • The US EDA will select 50-60 Coalition Phase 1 finalists and award technical assistance grants of up to $ 500,000 each, through a lead institution, to develop more the concept of the coalition and the collection of projects for their regional growth pole;
  • The finalists will compete for significant implementation assistance. The US EDA will award 20-30 coalitions each a total of $ 25-75 million (and potentially up to $ 100 million). These awards will help communities implement ambitious plans to boost their regional economies in various strategic growth sectors.

More info here.


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