Flinders Uni teaching & research centre to open at Tonsley Park



Flinders University will establish a teaching and research centre at the Tonsley Park Redevelopment, which will bring 2000 students and 150 staff to the advanced manufacturing hub.

Premier Jay Weatherill today announced that Flinders would become a strategic partner in Tonsley Park and invest $120 million on a new building and infrastructure, with the State Government providing $2.5 million to support the initial investment.

Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics undergraduate programs, as well as research programs in nanotechnology, medical devices and clean technology will be offered at Tonsley Park.

The State Government released a master plan earlier this year to transform Tonsley Park into a hub for high-value and innovative manufacturing companies that will create 6300 jobs over 20 years.

"Having some of the best and brightest Flinders University researchers and students working at Tonsley Park will help attract high-tech businesses to the redevelopment," Mr Weatherill said.

"We recently announced a Memorandum of Understanding with global innovation company Siemens - and now Flinders University has joined Tier5 and TAFE SA as founding investors in the project.

"We know from the work of international expert in advanced manufacturing Professor Goran Roos that all good industry clusters need a strong research and development arm, so this investment is a great step in our focus on growing advanced manufacturing.

"Flinders University will provide opportunities for private investment in new technologies through the Medical Device Partnering Program and the Flinders Centre for Nanoscale Science and Technology. With students and staff working at Tonsley Park there also will be opportunities for other services and retail businesses like restaurants and cafes."

Flinders University Vice-Chancellor Professor Michael Barber said the University's investment would enable it to deliver teaching, research and business investment activities aligned with the high-value manufacturing vision for the site.

"This is an exciting opportunity for us to help forge a new future for innovation at Tonsley Park," Professor Barber said.

"It demonstrates our real commitment to be the higher education partner of choice in Southern Adelaide and in particular to being recognised as playing a significant role in its economic transformation.

"Flinders' strong engagement with the business and community sectors through the Medical Device Partnering Program and the Southern Knowledge Transfer Program, respectively, will complement well the University's teaching and research presence at Tonsley Park."

An architectural firm will begin design work on the new facility, which the University expects to be fully operational in 2015. Further significant investment by the University is likely as demand for teaching and research space grows over the next 20 years.