Ben Franklin Technology Partners is joining in the ambitious, $100 million 3.0 University Place development in University City.

Ben Franklin’s southeastern Pennsylvania organization, a prolific seed and economic development nonprofit in the region, said Tuesday it is joining in University Place Associates’ newest project by means of a 28,500 square-foot “Innovation Floor” that will be devoted to supporting early-stage tech companies.

Ben Franklin will join the Wistar Institute as University Place Associates’ collaborators in the 240,000 square-foot building at 4101 Market St. The innovation center will feature shared lab and office space, and give resident companies access to Ben Franklin’s expertise in crucial topics like prototyping, building a supply chain, regulatory issues and market entry, among others.

The intention isn’t just to fuel the growth of the startups that will call the innovation center home, Ben Franklin’s President and CEO RoseAnn Rosenthal told the Philadelphia Business Journal, it’s to fan the flames of entrepreneurship activity in University City and keep startups spinning out of the region’s academic institutions.

“Ben Franklin has always tried to leapfrog to where development isn’t happening, to begin to catalyze some development,” she said.

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