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Eastman Business Park named new home of photonics test, assembly, and packaging facility

Governor Andrew Cuomo (center) announces the new home of a photonics manufacturing facility in Rochester.
Governor Andrew Cuomo (center) announces the new home of a photonics manufacturing facility in Rochester.

After surpassing dozens of worthy contenders, including the runner-up Rochester Institute of Technology, it is Eastman Business Park that was chosen as the future site of the AIM Photonics Manufacturing Facility.

EBP was selected in an open bidding process organized by the state and will be home to the test, assembly and packaging (TAP) facility.

Governor Andrew Cuomo made the announcement Wednesday at the Riverside Convention Center.

“We are entrepreneurial, we are energetic, and we have the natural skills and assets to make this industry, not just an industry that works for Rochester in New York but literally, an industry that can help this entire nation,” the governor said.

Officials conducted more than 30 site interviews, and narrowed the field down to 11 finalists before making the decision.

The site selected is a 22,000-square-foot building currently owned by ON Semiconductor at Eastman Business Park. The company will lease excess clean room, lab and office space for the TAP facility.

Photonics is the use of light particles instead of electrons in computer chips. The chips will be made in Albany at SUNY Poly's clean rooms and then tested and packaged in Rochester.

“It is very, very exciting and for so many years, we had the economic tide against us, but that tide has turned, and now that economic tide is with us,” Cuomo said.

The New York State Photonics Board of Officers held a meeting shortly after the announcement and unanimously recommended the new site.

Sasha-Ann Simons joined the team at WXXI News in 2015 as a Multimedia Reporter/Producer. She tells stories about the innovation economy and technology in upstate New York and also does general assignment reporting. Sasha-Ann is the host of Arts InFocus, WXXI-TV's weekly arts and culture program. She is also a fill-in host and regular contributor to Need To Know.