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Grant received for incubabor study

May 22, 2001

Grant received for incubabor study



By SCOTT BUTKI

scottb@herald-mail.com

Allegheny Ventures has received a $25,000 grant for a study on the feasibility of building a business incubator at the company's Friendship Technology Park.

With the grant, the company has sufficient funds to conduct the $50,000 study.

A business incubator is a facility with equipment needed by new businesses, such as computer and phone lines and support services. An incubator is intended to help ensure the success of start-up businesses.

Allegheny Ventures, Allegheny Energy's business subsidiary, is developing the 400-acre Friendship Technology Park south of Hagerstown off Interstate 70

The study will be completed by the fall, Jay Mason, an Allegheny Energy spokesman, said Monday. The study will examine the specifics of how an incubator would work as well as how it would be funded and managed. It also will look at how it would benefit the region.

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"We are thrilled to be awarded this important grant, which is a significant step forward in the development of our Friendship Technology Park," Paul M. Barbas, president of Allegheny Ventures, said in a news release. "The feasibility study could lead to a dynamic facility that spurs the growth of technology-based businesses at the park - an important part of our overall corporate growth strategy - and bring economic development benefits to the entire region.

The $25,000 grant is from the Technology Development Corp., known as TEDCO, which was established and is funded by the Maryland General Assembly to improve the state's reputation as a technology leader, Mason said. The agency has programs to aid and promote incubators.

The incubator study has received $10,000 in funding from Allegheny Energy, $10,000 from Cisco Systems Inc., $3,000 from the Washington County Commissioners and $2,000 from Maryland Information Technology.

The $50,000 study will be conducted by Cleveland-based Battelle, a development corporation that often works with companies on projects of this type, Mason said.

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