A big expansion for a leading biotechnology center happened on Monday in Huntsville.
The HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology broke ground for its new facility that will house different companies, including global headquarters for one.
"This is a huge day for HudsonAlpha," said Marshall Schreeder, Jr.
Marshall Schreeder Jr. is the Executive Vice-President for Discovery Life Sciences. It and the Center for Plant Science Sustainable Agriculture will soon be housed in the expanded HudsonAlpha campus.
Schreeder is excited about what they will be able to do with everyone working together under one roof at the new facility.
"We're able to combine all of our lab capabilities across the U.S. into one facility," said Schreeder.
The new facilities will include not only the space for labs, but also seven research greenhouses spanning 6,000 square feet.
"So, that's actually pretty substantial size for a research greenhouse. It wouldn't be a substantial size if you were growing...100,000 blueberries or something, but it's really substantial for research," said Jeremy Schmutz, HudsonAlpha faculty investigator.
The research they're doing could even impact crops in Alabama.
"So, what we've been trying to do is take this collection of information we've been building over the years and figure out how we can really directly apply it to accelerate crop development for Alabama," said Schmutz.
Students will also be able to use areas of the greenhouse for training and education purposes.
The expansion was made possible through $15 million awarded by the state.