August 13, 2008

Technology community celebrates 10 years

Aug. 15 event marks success of Sandia Science & Technology Park

Sandia Technology Park Sandia Science & Technology Park, looking east. (Photo courtesy of SS&TP)
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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The Sandia Science & Technology Park will celebrate its 10-year anniversary at an event Friday, Aug. 15, from 10-11:30 a.m. at the Pocket Park II on Innovation Parkway, and Gibson Avenue, SE.

Confirmed speakers for the event include Sen. Pete Domenici, R-N.M.; Rep. Heather Wilson, R-N.M., Sandy Baruah, Assistant Secretary of Commerce, U.S. Economic Development Administration; Mayor Martin Chavez; Sandia President and Labs Director Tom Hunter; Director of the National Nuclear Security Administration Service Center Karen Boardman; Pat Lyons, Commissioner of Public Lands, N.M. State Land Office; and former New Mexico State Rep. Ted Hobbs.

The vision for the campus-like park began in the early 1990s when Dan Hartley, now-retired former vice president of development at Sandia, began discussing the idea of a tech park with various officials. Public landowners — including representatives from Albuquerque Public Schools, the State Land Office, and DOE — as well as private landowners then got together to discuss developing the property to bring start-up companies and Sandia industry partners to the area.

What started in May 1998 as a big piece of vacant land on the edge of Eubank Boulevard near Kirtland Air Force Base, now comprises 18 buildings totaling nearly 900,000 square feet of occupied space. More than 2,000 employees are employed at the 28 organizations located at the park.

The first company to sign on was EMCORE Corp., a semiconductor business that makes photovoltaic cells and optical communications devices. EMCORE now has its headquarters at the park and consists of three buildings.

One of the highlights of the park is that it is connected by ORBIT (Optic Rings for Broadband Information Transport), which offers a high-tech fiber optic backbone to the entire park. This allows easy communication flow among the tenants and provides them with the fastest transmission medium commercially available.

Since its inception, the SS&TP has had a $1.4 billion cumulative impact on New Mexico wage and salary disbursements attributable to park activities, according to an economic impact assessment conducted by the Mid-Region Council of Governments (MRCOG). MRCOG used the Regional Economic Models, Inc. (REMI) Policy InsightTM Model to do the assessment of the park’s impact from May 1998 through December 2007. The figures reflect the estimated impacts to the region in 2007 dollars including Bernalillo, Sandoval, Torrance, and Valencia counties.

The park has also helped increase revenue in New Mexico as a result of personal income tax (using 5 percent rate) by $72 million.

The park has had nearly $800 million in cumulative impact on taxable consumption (goods and services) and $40 million in a cumulative impact on gross receipts tax revenue in New Mexico and $5 million in gross receipts tax revenue to Albuquerque. The average salary for each full-time private sector job in the park is $67,542. The comparable figure for the Albuquerque metro area is $37,284.

One of the next goals for the park is to have food service on the campus. The park is also looking into getting a hotel built in an area close to the National Museum of Nuclear Science and History. The museum will be completed in 2009.

Enhancements to the fiber optic backbone will include security and surveillance additions, which will be tied to cameras, alarms, 911 call boxes, and street lights. New electronic message signage will be added along with freshly landscaped medians, Jackie Kerby Moore, SS&TP executive director says.

In the next 10 years, the park plans to expand to more than 6,000 employees and begin on the second phase of the master plan, which is to develop an additional 100 acres at the park.

For more information about the Sandia Science & Technology Park see

Media planning on attending the event need to contact Michael Padilla at (505) 284-5325 or by 9 a.m. Friday, Aug. 15. No Sandia badging is necessary.

Directions to the event:
Go south on Eubank Boulevard past Central Avenue and Southern Boulevard. Turn left on Innovation Parkway and follow it as it curves around and heads south. Parking is available in the lot on the west side of Innovation Parkway. Walk east across Innovation Parkway to the event.

Sandia is a multiprogram laboratory operated by Sandia Corporation, a Lockheed Martin company, for the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration. With main facilities in Albuquerque, N.M., and Livermore, Calif., Sandia has major R&D responsibilities in national security, energy and environmental technologies, and economic competitiveness.

Sandia media relations contact: Michael Padilla, (505) 284-5325,