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A new building development by PGG Wrightson Seeds at AgResearch’s Lincoln campus is a significant step forward for both parties, and for the burgeoning research and innovation hub in the Canterbury town, leaders of the two organisations say.
PGG Wrightson Group General Manager Seed and Grain John McKenzie says: “It makes good sense for us to join our key research and business partners. Collaboration with our partners is an intrinsic part of how we work. Science and people are closely linked, so our shared approach will be further enabled by a closer proximity.”
The new PGG Wrightson Seeds (PGW Seeds) building is on the Springs Road frontage of the AgResearch campus opposite Lincoln University.
Mr McKenzie says: “I visited the site last week and construction of the building is really taking shape. Our Christchurch-based team are looking forward to being closer to their Lincoln-based Kimihia Research Centre colleagues, as well as our strategic partners.”
The building is intended to house 90 staff from PGW Seeds team. It will place the team in close proximity to key partners AgResearch, Lincoln University, and Plant and Food Research.
Mr McKenzie continues: “Collaboration is a fundamental part of the way we do business. Moving our Christchurch office-based team to Lincoln provides our staff with the opportunity to work even more closely and interact with our key partners. In addition, being based in Lincoln will expose our operation to Lincoln University students and provide more opportunity for post graduate students to work with us.”
AgResearch chief executive Tom Richardson says this investment by PGW Seeds further advances the innovation precinct concept proposed by AgResearch in its campus development strategy which seeks to enable more seamless collaboration between students, academics, researchers and business.
“We will soon see construction starting just across the road from this PGW Seeds development, at the site of new Lincoln University-AgResearch joint facility, which will house 700 scientists, academics and students working side by side to address New Zealand’s biggest challenges and opportunities,” Dr Richardson says.
“Having these two significant new facilities being built in parallel is creating a real buzz of activity and anticipation. Our vision is suddenly becoming tangible for many and we’re pleased with the approaches we are getting from businesses enquiring about options to join us here in Lincoln.”
“Our plan has always been to catalyse a rejuvenation of the wider Lincoln precinct by our significant investment and staff movements to Lincoln and the PGW Seeds development is a major milestone towards this.”
“We think working closely together will enable us to deliver better research and an even more skilled workforce to support the land-based industries in New Zealand into the future. Technologically, things are evolving quickly in agriculture systems and food production, and organisations working in this space have to be well-positioned to change with it.”
The new PGW Seeds building is expected to be completed in mid-2019.