News & Events

Protected Barn Owls nest at Coldstream

barnowlLEXINGTON, KY (June 4, 2010) — UK's Coldstream Research Campus has new, though temporary, tenants. Protected under the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act, a pair of nesting barn owls is raising four barn owl chicks in a nest at the top of the Lexhold building off Aristides Boulevard.


The owls were first discovered by a construction worker who was completing the building's "eyebrow," an architectural feature that runs across the top of the building. Wanting to be good environmental stewards, Bill Bishop, who is overseeing the completion of the building, and construction manager Bill Borregard contacted the state fish and wildlife experts to identify the birds.


The preservation of barn owls is a major concern in much of the U.S. including Kentucky. The birds traditionally nest in hollowed out tree cavities. As these become increasingly scarce, however, the owls have moved to barns and other structures adjoining vast pastoral spaces.


According to Kate Heyden, an avian biologist with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources, there are currently only 10 known nests in Kentucky. Construction on the Lexhold building will be delayed until the end of June when it is expected that all of the barn owl chicks will leave the nest. An agreement has also been made to install an owl box on top of the eyebrow as barn owls often return to the same spot to nest again.

FEMA leases space at Coldstream Research Campus

LEXINGTON, KY (June 2, 2010) — The Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) has leased space at the University of Kentucky's Coldstream Research Campus following Kentucky's designation as a major disaster area May 11. Approximately 61,000 square feet in the Lexhold Technology Building off Aristides Boulevard will serve as a central coordinating location for the 300 FEMA professionals who have been mobilized for federal recovery operations in affected Kentucky counties.


According to Len Heller, UK's vice president for Commercialization and Economic Development, FEMA selected Coldstream because of its location at the intersection of I-75 and I-64.


The FEMA Web site is reporting that people in 61 Kentucky counties are eligible for individual assistance (assistance to individuals and households) following the May 1 severe storms, flooding, mudslides, and tornadoes.


FEMA and the Kentucky Division of Emergency Management are operating disaster recovery centers around Kentucky. Please note that the facility at Coldstream is not a disaster recovery center. Additional information is available at and or by calling toll-free 800-621-FEMA (3362) (for TTY call 800-462-7585).

USEF Drug Testing and Research Lab will relocate to Coldstream Research Campus

LEXINGTON, KY (April 5, 2010) — The drug testing and research lab for the United States Equestrian Federation will relocate from Ithaca, N.Y. to UK's Coldstream Research Campus by the end of the year. According to UK Vice President for Commercialization & Economic Development Len Heller, "USEF will move their research and testing operations into a re-fitted, 7,500 sq. ft. lab space in the Kentucky Technology Center complex at Coldstream called the mini campus."


The USEF is headquartered at the Kentucky Horse Park and drug tests and licenses equestrian competitions of all levels across the country, in addition to training, selecting and funding the U.S. Equestrian Team. "The decision to bring the lab to Lexington has to do with many things including being headquartered here, but it also has to do with being part of the legacy of the World Equestrian Games this fall," says USEF CEO John Long.


The 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games will be held at the Kentucky Horse Park September 25 to October 10. The new USEF testing lab at Coldstream Research Campus is anticipated to bring 12 jobs paying an average $26 an hour including benefits.

Governor Beshear announces expansion of Lexington pharmaceutical company

FRANKFORT, Ky. (December 14, 2009) Gov. Steve Beshear and Cabinet for Economic Development representatives today joined community and company officials to announce Lexington-based Summit Biosciences, a specialty pharmaceuticals business and client of the Lexington Innovation and Commercialization Center, will expand its operation creating 22 new jobs and investing over $5 million in the Commonwealth. Seventeen of the projected new jobs are high-tech positions with an average annual salary of more than $64,000.


Summit develops and manufactures generic prescription and new over-the-counter (OTC) pharmaceutical products administered to patients by means of a nasal spray. The company plans to submit the first of several applications to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) in mid-2010 in order to receive approval to manufacture and market its generic products starting in 2011 and 2012.


“The creation and retention of jobs for Kentuckians continues to be a top priority of my administration,” said Gov. Beshear. “During these difficult economic times, I am especially pleased to announce that 22 new quality jobs will now be available in Lexington. The drugs under development by Summit Biosciences take advantage of an increasingly popular medication delivery method, which can help boost the company’s sales and lead to the creation of many new high-tech jobs in Kentucky.”


The company is also developing new OTC nasal spray products for which it will apply for patents and plans to begin manufacturing in the first quarter of 2010. Several patent applications are expected to be filed in 2010 relating to the company’s OTC products.


To date, Summit has secured a partnership with a publicly traded generic-drug manufacturing company to jointly develop generic versions of five FDA-approved nasal spray products, including one to treat osteoporosis and others used to treat migraine headaches. The company has also secured a contract manufacturing agreement with a company to develop and make a new nasal spray product to treat pain.


“We are pleased with the excellent progress we have made thus far toward commercializing our products, reducing healthcare costs and creating jobs,” said Greg Plucinski, chief operating officer at Summit Biosciences. “We secured our first partnership agreement in June, completed the acquisition of our fully equipped manufacturing facility in August and are currently focused on developing our pipeline products.”


The Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) preliminarily approved Summit Biosciences for funding up to $250,000 in the form of a forgivable loan from the Cabinet for Economic Development’s High-Tech Pools, which are used to build technology-based and research-intensive companies and projects. KEDFA also preliminarily approved Summit Biosciences for tax incentives up to $500,000 under the Kentucky Business Investment (KBI) program. KBI incentives can be earned through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments.


“The support from the state and city will contribute immensely toward our greater goals as we bring lower-cost generic and innovative nasal spray products to market,” added Plucinski. “We look forward to receiving additional support and are proud to contribute to job creation and reducing the cost of healthcare through the growth of Summit Biosciences.”


“Today’s announcement illustrates the potential of our healthcare and our high-tech sectors and the enormous benefit of being the hometown of the University of Kentucky and its outstanding College of Pharmacy,” said Lexington Mayor Jim Newberry. “The nationally ranked College has long been a leader in the development of nasal delivery systems, and Summit Biosciences has funded portions of this research. The good jobs that will be created by Summit also illustrates the strength of an economic development process that involves government, the University and the private sector.”


“Summit Biosciences is the type of company that will make a great impact on the Bluegrass region,” said Commerce Lexington President & CEO Bob Quick. “Summit is working diligently on developing products that will reduce healthcare costs, as well as creating high-tech jobs for our citizens. The Bluegrass Business Development Partnership has worked closely with Summit, and we are excited to welcome them to Lexington.”


For more information on Summit Biosciences, visit A community profile for Lexington can be viewed at:


The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development is the primary state agency in Kentucky responsible for creating new jobs and new investment in the state. New business investment in Kentucky in 2008 totaled nearly $1.7 billion with the creation of more than 7,750 new jobs. Information on available development sites, workforce training, incentive programs, community profiles, small business development and other resources is available at

Governor Beshear unveils plans, drawings of New Eastern State Hospital

LEXINGTON, KY (Oct. 30, 2009) − Governor Steve Beshear has unveiled plans and artist renderings of a new Eastern State Hospital facility, to be built on a site at the University of Kentucky's (UK) Coldstream Research Campus in Lexington. Construction on the project is scheduled to begin in July 2010.


The 230-bed, approximately 300,000 square foot replacement facility will provide a modern setting for inpatient psychiatric treatment, along with specialized services for individuals with acquired brain injuries, individuals with psychiatric disabilities requiring nursing facility level of care and forensic mental health services.


In addition to the inpatient hospital, the new Eastern State Hospital campus will include three 11,000 square foot personal care homes, each with 16 beds that will offer a less restrictive level of care that promotes patients' return to a community setting. These personal care homes will provide residential psychiatric services and serve as a step-down from the acute care setting.


"Unveiling the plans and drawings for this new facility puts us yet another step closer to the day in which we open the doors of the new Eastern State Hospital, transforming how Kentucky cares for individuals with mental health needs," said Gov. Beshear.


The $129 million facility will replace the 185-year-old Eastern State Hospital, the second oldest psychiatric hospital in the country. The project involves a unique agreement between UK, Bluegrass Community and Technical College (BCTC), the state and the city of Lexington in which Eastern State will move from its campus on Newtown Pike to the Coldstream Research Campus location; BCTC will move from UK’s Lexington campus to the current Eastern State location; and UK will take over BCTC’s location on Cooper Drive, also providing UK with additional parking.


"This new hospital, and the move of Bluegrass Community and Technical College to the former Eastern State site, represents a huge leap ahead for Lexington and for the Commonwealth," Lexington Mayor Jim Newberry said. "The new hospital underscores Lexington's lead role in providing advanced health care throughout Kentucky and across the nation. Construction projects are ongoing or planned in the near future at every major hospital in town. Lexington is also a national leader in education, and this new campus will complete our higher education triangle downtown, giving BCTC the room it needs to grow so that it can provide our region and the country with the highly trained work force necessary to compete in a global economy."


"This is an exciting moment for the Commonwealth," said UK President Lee T. Todd Jr. "Not only will this collaborative effort provide Eastern State Hospital with a modern, world-class facility that it needs, but it will also provide an exciting new tenant to UK's ever-growing Coldstream Research Campus."


The design will be finalized over the next several months, with the bidding process for the construction tentatively scheduled for approximately June 2010. Substantial completion of the facility is anticipated in 2012. The facility will be Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certified, meaning it will meet the highest green building and performance measures.


"We are particularly excited about the expansion of services the new facility will allow," said Cabinet for Health and Family Services Secretary Janie Miller. "For example, the addition of neuro-behavioral beds and geriatric-nursing facility beds will create the opportunity for individuals with acquired brain injuries and elderly patients with severe mental illness to receive needed inpatient psychiatric treatment closer to their family and natural support setting."


Eastern State Hospital serves an average of 2,000 patients per year from 80 Kentucky counties. The primary counties served include Boyle, Madison, Franklin, Kenton and Fayette, ranging from 65 to 279 patients annually.

Lexington ranks 6th for best mid-sized metro to launch a small business

Editors note: Lexington has ranked sixth for best mid-sized metro area to launch a small business according to's 2009 report. The annual report ranks large, mid and small metro areas based on economic growth, affordable workers and few forclosures. All statistics are for the full Metropolitan Statistical Area. For a complete list of data sources, see's "How we picked the Best Places."


By Maya Payne Smart,, Best Places to Launch: The best metro areas for small business startups


LEXINGTON, KY (Oct. 14, 2009) − Lexington puts a unique spin on 4-H: Horses, health care, high-tech and higher education make up its diversified economy.


Known as the Thoroughbred Capital of the World, Lexington is home to horse farms that handle more than $750 million in horse sales annually. The region is expected to reap another $150 million in economic activity when hundreds of thousands of visitors come to town for the 2010 World Equestrian Games in September 2010. The city's revitalization efforts have reached warp speed in preparation for the event: New music venues and restaurants are sprouting, along with fresh parks and biking and walking trails.


Even in the absence of major events, Lexington knows how to draw a crowd. Residents throughout the eastern third of Kentucky travel miles to reach its retail stores and three major hospitals, all of which have begun major expansion projects.


The University of Kentucky, Transylvania University and another dozen colleges, universities and technical colleges educate workers for Lexington's growing tech sector, which includes strong Lexmark, IBM and Hewlett-Packard presences.


Local businesspeople say the municipal government is undergoing a vast restructuring to eliminate redundancies and improve communication, which promises an even more welcoming environment for business owners.


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Redundant power coming to UK’s Coldstream Research Campus

LEXINGTON, KY (Aug. 18, 2009) − Coldstream Research Campus will begin offering redundant power and fiber optics by early next year. Kentucky Utilities is currently constructing a new substation off Georgetown Road and an overhead route to the university's research campus at the intersection of I-75 and I-64. Construction will begin later this summer on an underground duct bank system to distribute power and data strategically throughout the 735-acre campus.


Redundant power helps ensure that if one source of power malfunctions, a second one can pick up the slack without interruption. Fiber optics provide some of the highest connection speeds possible today which lets companies share large amounts of data quickly with suppliers, partners, researchers and customers.


"We know that redundant power and fiber optics are important to the types of companies we want at Coldstream - data and technology centers, labs with sensitive equipment, testing facilities, and financial centers," says Len Heller, UK vice president for Commercialization & Economic Development, whose office includes Coldstream. "Adding redundant power to Coldstream will position us in the top tier of research parks in the Midwest."


Vince Kellen, UK's new CIO for Information Technology, says, "Leading 21st century businesses have two distinct features - they are data-intensive and they have a need to collaborate closely with many other researchers and companies across the globe. This requires a reliable facilities infrastructure that is immune to the vagaries of power supply and that is highly connected to the Internet and to other data centers worldwide." Kellen and Heller are working on plans for the university’s next generation data center at Coldstream.  


The redundant feeds project will be financed primarily with a $5.5 million grant from the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority's High-Tech Investment Pool. Heller, as president and CEO of Kentucky Technology Inc., UK's for-profit corporation, is overseeing the KEDFA grant. According to Deborah Clayton, who serves as commissioner of the Department of Commercialization and Innovation in the state economic development cabinet, "The University of Kentucky’s Coldstream Research Campus is an impressive economic development asset."


Work has been underway for the past year on a new vision and master development plan for Coldstream. "This infrastructure improvement will be an important asset for marketing the new Coldstream and recruiting companies, specifically high-tech companies, to our campus," says Coldstream Executive Director Tina Carpenter. "We also have companies at Coldstream now that need a redundant electrical power and fiber optic supply."


"Coldstream is poised to be a premier Kentucky location for high-tech businesses including our own UK spin-off companies," says UK President Lee T. Todd Jr. "We simply do not have enough space in our campus incubators for all of our faculty who want to start companies. This is actually a good problem and Coldstream is the answer."

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