SURREY, B.C. – B.C. officials aim to make Surrey a “second Lower Mainland downtown” with new plans for an innovation corridor.
The announcement stated that the innovation corridor a new government priority that will be crafted in consultation with local government, businesses, First Nations and other partners. The first step in the plan is establishing a Quantum Algorithms Institute at Simon Fraser University’s Surrey campus.
“Creating an innovation corridor in Surrey and up the Fraser Valley will create good jobs, attract talent, reduce commute times and raise the standard of living,” said Premier John Horgan in a press release. “Working with our partners, we will create an innovation hub where companies and talent will cluster, supporting our goal of a strong, sustainable economy that benefits the entire province.”
Officials noted that the biggest issues preventing the tech sector are affordability and access to industrial land. They believe that positioning Surrey as a hub of regional economic growth will help ease affordability pressures, while maximizing the potential of the whole economy.
The Quantum Algorithms institute will be located at Simon Fraser University’s Surrey campus. It will work with research universities throughout the province and aim to establish B.C. as a global force in quantum research.
“Quantum computer solutions will help develop the innovations of tomorrow in sectors such as transportation and logistics, medical research, advanced design and materials testing,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology. “Adoption across these sectors is predicted to surpass $450 billion annually. The new institute will train future data scientists who will attract companies worldwide, bringing significant benefit to B.C.’s economy.”
Andrew Weaver, BC Green Party Caucus leader, said, “Funding these kinds of innovative initiatives, especially around education, is an investment in British Columbia’s future. Quantum computing technology is one tool available to build a new, sustainable economy that is not just resilient but is nimble enough to transform British Columbia’s industrial landscape in ways that will benefit people from every area of the province for decades to come.”
The new institute will utilize B.C.’s research work and companies to develop a new graduate degree program in quantum computing.
“Surrey’s City Centre has established itself as a hub for innovation and higher learning. Our location, along with our expertise and experience make Surrey the ideal place to advance technology and innovation in the province,” said Doug McCallum, mayor of Surrey. “City council and I look forward to working closely with the B.C. government to expedite this visionary project that will benefit not only the people of Surrey, but all who call B.C. home.”