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Former Library New Home For Tech Hub

Marlborough’s new technology and innovation hub will be up and running in the old Blenheim library building later this year.

Economic, Finance and Community Committee Chair David Croad said the tech hub would go upstairs in the old library building, on the corner of Seymour and Arthur streets.

The tech hub aimed to foster start-ups, boost the agritech sector, increase productivity and enhance local investment opportunities for entrepreneurs.

Mr Croad said it was exciting an existing Council building would be utilised for the tech hub, which would add vibrancy to the town as an incubator for start-ups.

“Council took the former library building to the market and it didn’t sell, but with a number of enquiries from the rental market a decision has been made to put the tech hub upstairs and seek co-tenants for the downstairs area,” he said.

The tech hub had been in the planning stage for some time and Mr Croad said it was fantastic to move into the implementation stage of this economic development project.

“The region’s business ecosystem needs a place where innovative companies can meet with aspiring entrepreneurs, scientists, technologists, investors and business support providers,” he said.

The former library site was an ideal location, and it was hoped other tenants would be confirmed shortly.

The tech hub received a $578,000 boost from the Government’s Kānoa fund last year which will help with fit-out costs with programme and operational costs coming from existing budgets. Fit-out will include a co-working space, a prototyping room for product development and shared meeting rooms.

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Council’s Economic Development team researched similar models around New Zealand before embarking on the project.

Economic Development Portfolio Manager Dorien Vermaas said the hub aimed to help businesses create more value in Marlborough’s agritech sectors, support startups working on wellbeing and sustainability and create investment opportunities and highly paid jobs in the region.

She looked forward to future events taking place in the space.

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