Research and work areas for 7,000 scientists and specialized personnel, as well as tennis courts, football fields, a lake with sea water and facilities for children will include – among others – the Innovation and Technology Center of Thessaloniki Thess INTEC, the 4th generation International Technology Park to be created in an area of 760 acres next to Thessaloniki airport.
The design concerns a huge living laboratory, an innovation park that will at the same time have places of culture, sports and recreation and, as the president and CEO of “Thess INTEC S.A.” Nikos Efthymiadis stressed, speaking at the “5th Conference on real estate in Northern Greece – Prodexpo North”, it is “a very modern project with all the social and environmental criteria, with smart buildings.”
“The location in real estate is top-notch but in Thess INTEC there is a tendency for greater synergy of the location with the environment, society and people. It is a large project with a total building capacity of 250,000 square meters and we will build 25,000 square meters in the first phase to raise the flag of the innovation center, where 7,000 people, scientists and specialized personnel will work, create jobs in research and development and jobs in general for innovation”, said Mr. Efthymiadis, noting that the master plan adopts all modern models of development and the new way of life imposed by the post-Covid era and “all investments, everything we make in the park after 99 years, will eventually be attributed to the universities, the municipality and the city”.
“How will the construction proceed – 93% of the first buildings to be erected are already rented”
Regarding the planning of the building works, Mr. Efthymiadis clarified that the siting includes the streets and buildings with which the park will start and the real estate development companies and investment schemes will then undertake the expansion of the park, depending on their design and the needs of the market.”Of the 760 acres, 150 are being built,” he noted, adding that the uses of the remaining acres include 4,000-seat parking, a seawater lake, a park, facilities for children and the occupants of the technology park, sports venues, “so that those who work there can not just function properly at work, but have a quality of life.”
The president of Thess INTEC made it known that “there are currently about 100 businesses and institutions that have expressed interest in coming to settle in this park“, while “together with universities and research institutes they have formed 6 mega projects per technology sector, including in nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, energy, logistics.”
In this context, as he explained, already “93% of the pieces that will be built in the first phase from our first budget are already rented to these businesses and to institutions, such as CERTH”.
“A green living state”
Regarding the activities that THESS Intec will host, its president explained that there is a lot of space to become a huge living lab where researchers will be able to manage technologies for waste, circular economy, electric vehicles but above all we want it to be a green living state, which along with the work will become a place of culture, a pole of attraction for the local community, to be visited by schools and citizens and employees to be able to play tennis, football.”
Regarding the attraction of interested parties to join the park, Mr. Efthymiadis pointed out that “there is not the traditional relationship between owner and tenant, we are not interested in someone just renting”, but the universities, the research centers, the businesses that will cooperate in the center “to be groups of wealth production.”
“Thess INTEC aims to enable businesses and institutions to generate innovation and gain from it, but at the same time to connect with each other. The central idea of the success of such a park is the way one will work next to the other, the agronomist next to the engineer, the mathematician next to the physicist, regardless of whether someone produces tomatoes or aluminum, as all of us today need a range of sciences and skills in order to have an effect”, explained Mr. Efthymiadis concluding that the central idea of the project are synergies “in a very nice landscape, in a very modern real estate, which will give the cooperation that the city needs to develop its new identity, since Thessaloniki is a port, an exhibition, a university, these are the main pillars and around these pillars we will all work.”
“Deloitte seeks to hire 500 scientists in 2022”
New hires in Thessaloniki are planned by Deloitte, the multinational professional services company that has been established in Technopolis. As stated by the President of the High-Tech Business Park “Technopolis Thessaloniki” Tassos Tzikas “the largest investment that has been made in Thessaloniki in recent years, the investment of Deloitte, which has been installed in Technopolis.
Deloitte, as Mr. Tzikas explained, employs “700 people in Thessaloniki and is currently in search of scientists to reach 1,200 in 2022”.
Mr. Tzikas talked about the first steps of Technopolis, explaining that “new technologies are not developed out of nowhere, they need technology parks, clusters, incubators.”
“Technopolis was the first in Greece to take an initiative, which concerned not only IT companies but the entire industry”, said Mr. Tzikas, noting that the initiative, although it met at the beginning with many bureaucratic obstacles, showed the way for how “the public and private sector can cooperate, while bridging the academic community with the market.In this context, he stressed that THESS Intec, Technopolis, TIF and all the initiatives taken in the direction of synergies help to make Thessaloniki a HUB of new technologies.