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Posted on Mon, Sep 27, 2010 : 11:58 a.m.

David Canter to reveal plans for ex-Pfizer site's future in Ann Arbor at U-M event

By Nathan Bomey

David Canter.JPG

David Canter is leading the University of Michigan's efforts to reposition the ex-Pfizer site.

Nathan Bomey | AnnArbor.com

The University of Michigan will offer more clues on its plans for the 174-acre ex-Pfizer campus at an event Friday morning.
 

Former Pfizer Ann Arbor site leader David Canter, who is managing the site's repositioning for U-M, will discuss the university's vision for the site over the next few years. He is speaking Friday morning at a symposium organized by U-M's A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute and the Michigan Institute for Clinical & Health Research.

Canter's talk comes as the university is gradually making decisions about the site's future. AnnArbor.com first reported Sunday that the university plans to launch a business incubator to house some of its own startup companies at the former Pfizer site, now called North Campus Research Complex.

U-M's Technology Transfer Office and Business Engagement Center are moving at the end of September to a 32,000-square-foot space in a former Pfizer building at 1600 Huron Parkway, where they'll be clustered with the new incubator. U-M's Tech Transfer Office helped 10 startup companies spin out of the university during the 2009-10 fiscal year.

U-M startup companies 2009-10

  • Histosonics
  • Shepherd Intelligent Systems   
  • Crossbar
  • Tangent Medical Technologies
  • miRcore
  • Civionics
  • 3D Biomatrix
  • Hearing Health Sciences
  • Infomotion Sports
  • Vortex Hydro Energy

The university -- which recently agreed to lease 4,300 square feet of laboratory space at the site to an MSU spinoff company called BoroPharm -- plans to use the ex-Pfizer site to help strengthen its ties to commercial partners. It also wants to use the site to reconfigure its own research strategy. University administrators want researchers to work together in multi-disciplinary, cross-industry settings to produce technology breakthroughs.

Other speakers at Friday's event, called “Translational Research: The Bridge from Discovery to Medical Practice,” are U-M scientists Eva Feldman, Russell DeJong, Max Wicha and Blake Roessler.

"As research teams from around the university begin moving into the sprawling research campus, formerly owned by Pfizer, this year’s symposium is focusing on U-M’s commitment to translational research, transforming laboratory discoveries into real health gains through new approaches to prevention diagnosis and the treatment of disease," U-M said in a statement.

Contact AnnArbor.com's Nathan Bomey at (734) 623-2587 or nathanbomey@annarbor.com. You can also follow him on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's newsletters.

Comments

Somewhat Concerned

Tue, Sep 28, 2010 : 2:40 p.m.

UM has no solid plans for the old Pfizer site. It is floundering around, talking about tearing down walls and collaborating, and making the vaguest, general, feel-good statements because it doesn't have a plan. The problem is that it doesn't have a plan a year after buying the site, and the leadership for the new site doesn't have the support of the campus community because it has done its usual top-down approach. It hasn't reached out to people who could help and has turned down offers of help. This is another Mary Sue Coleman / Steve Forest know best project. It probably was a good idea to buy the facilities because they were bought for far less than it would cost to build them and the university will need most of what is there. The goof up is how the university has been handling the acquisition, and it's no surprise that the top administration is fumbling what should be a good play.

Erich Jensen

Tue, Sep 28, 2010 : 1:38 p.m.

Dear "A Concerned Citized," Where did you get information? David Canter is a strong researcher and phenomenal leader with decades of research and development experience in human health and has directed/led state of the art (equal and better in some areas than UM) facilities (which included 1000s of translational and clinical researchers) in locales in different parts of the world. These facilities actually brought amazing medicines to the global marketplace. And by the way, he is a physician, too. Erich Jensen

Erich Jensen

Tue, Sep 28, 2010 : 1:37 p.m.

Dear "A Concerned Citized," Where did you get information? David Canter is a strong researcher and phenomenal leader with decades of research and development experience in human health and has directed/led state of the art (equal and better in some areas than UM) facilities (which included 1000s of translational and clinical researchers) in locales in different parts of the world. These facilities actually brought amazing medicines to the global marketplace. And by the way, he is a physician, too. Erich Jensen

maryfmasson

Tue, Sep 28, 2010 : noon

You can find out more about the history, process and plans for the North Campus Research Complex at www.umncrc.org.

Steve Hendel

Tue, Sep 28, 2010 : 10:06 a.m.

Don't you usually decide what you're going to do with a piece of property BEFORE you lay out over $100 million to buy it?

A Concerned Citized

Tue, Sep 28, 2010 : 7:35 a.m.

It's a scary thing for UM when a former Pfizer site manager (not a person with a strong research background) is put in charge of a huge research opportunity at the NCRC. Your headlines - David Canter to reveal plans for ex-Pfizer site's future - is almost laughable, if it weren't actually true. I am not clear as to how someone who has never been involved in academic research, or even had his own research is qualified to make such important and long term decisions for such a prestigious institution. It makes you ask the question, what were they thinking?