Contact: William J. Fazioli (401) 435-7521
Mass. Based Nanotechnology Manufacturer Looks to East Providence for Expansion Proposed $30 million manufacturing facility would create jobs and serve as economic cornerstone of Waterfront development
March 4, 2005 (East Providence, RI) - Aspen Aerogels, developer of a nano-technology based super-insulation material, is considering an investment of $30 million to redevelop property in the East Providence Waterfront District. The proposed expansion could add 70 new jobs next year. Aspen Aerogels has proposed redeveloping property at 3 Dexter Road with the goal of opening in early 2006. New employment opportunities would include positions in manufacturing, engineering and management. The company currently has research and development, along with a small manufacturing facility, in Northborough, Mass., and has chosen East Providence as the location for its 140,000 sq ft manufacturing facility.
Aerogels are highly insulating materials that provide two to ten times more thermal and acoustical insulating power than traditional insulations such as foam and fiberglass. Besides NASA, Aspen Aerogels' government clients include the Elite Special Forces of the U.S. military and the Canadian ski team. Fortune 500 clients include Boeing, GM, DuPont, among others.
"U.S. Senator Jack Reed and Rep. Patrick Kennedy have been instrumental in helping Aspen Aerogels secure $5 million federal appropriations over the past 2 years to locate and expand our manufacturing operations in Rhode Island, and East Providence officials have been supportive and accommodating to the requirements of our growing company," said Donald R. Young, president of Aspen Aerogels. "We had pursued other locations in Rhode Island looking for the perfect location for our facility, and East Providence had the right mix of infrastructure and partnership-oriented public officials."
"We are delighted that Aspen Aerogels has selected East Providence to expand manufacturing of its patented technologies," according to Joseph Larisa, Jr., mayor of East Providence. "The potential for nearly 70 well-paying management and manufacturing jobs right here in East Providence supports the vision of our Waterfront redevelopment."
"Clearly, having a company like Aspen Aerogels in the city will have a positive economic impact," said William Fazioli, city manager. "In addition, there will be ancillary benefits, such as visits to the city by Aspen Aerogels' strategic partners, such as DuPont and 3M, providing invaluable positive exposure to our great City."
"The idea of reclaiming the Waterfront is to provide the perfect mix of jobs, retail and residential use of this previously underutilized area," said Patrick A. Rogers, chairman of the East Providence Special Development District Commission. "Aspen Aerogels would be a welcomed addition to our overall economic and design strategies for the Waterfront. The Dexter Road District of the Waterfront was in fact, specifically targeted for high-technology businesses such as this."
The plans will have a public hearing on March 9th before the Waterfront Special Development Commission's Design Review Committee and as well as a public hearing with the Commission’s Hearing Panel on March 16th. On March 21st the plans will have a hearing with the full Waterfront District Commission. For more information regarding the review process contact Jeanne M. Boyle Interim Executive Director.
About the City of East Providence
East Providence, established in 1862, maintains a strong commitment to economic growth and vitality with programs and initiatives designed to promote the expansion of existing commercial and industrial businesses as well as to attract new business. The City's Waterfront Special Development District Commission was established in 2004 to adopt, implement and administer a plan of development for 300 acres of underutilized Waterfront District space along the Providence and Seekonk Rivers. For more information visit www.eastprovidence.com.
About Aspen Aerogels
Formed in 2001, privately held Aspen Aerogels is the acknowledged leader in aerogel technology. Aerogels are highly insulative nanoporous materials that provide anywhere from 2 to 10 times more thermal and acoustic insulating capacity than incumbent materials such as fiberglass, foams and microporous silicas. Currently available in blanket form, Aspen Aerogels’ materials are used as is or as part of insulation systems that have led to new levels of performance in oil and gas, automotive, aerospace, microelectronic, telecom, apparel and footwear applications. Customers include Fortune 100 concerns as well as major global players from Europe and the Pacific Rim. For more information visit www.AspenAerogels.com