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Tuscaloosa's The Gateway Innovation and Discovery Center Set to Open

Tuscaloosa's The Gateway Innovation and Discovery Center Set to Open City of Tuscaloosa

When the April 27, 2011, tornado ripped through Tuscaloosa, the city vowed to build back stronger, safer and smarter. The newest example of that resolve is The Gateway: Alberta’s Innovation and Discovery Center, which opens its doors to the public this week.

A ribbon cutting ceremony was scheduled for Wednesday, June 29, at 10 a.m. Other opening week activities include guided tours on Thursday, June 30, at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m., a meet and greet at The Gateway with live music on Friday, July 1 from 5 to 7 p.m. and a children’s fun day on Saturday, July 2 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Featuring high-tech meeting rooms, a children’s discovery area and an interactive, 16-by-5 foot touch screen wall, The Gateway is a technology resource designed to serve everyone in the community, as well as visitors to the area. City officials say the information is curated and presented in compelling, accessible ways.

“The goal is access to broadband technology,” said Tuscaloosa Mayor Walter Maddox. “We want to empower our community by making information as accessible and portable as possible.”

Maddox also said The Gateway’s high-tech atmosphere will benefit area young people and older residents as well.

“We want our students to be able to thrive in a competitive landscape, and tech literacy is a prerequisite for that, from pre-k through college,” he said. “We want our workforce to gain marketable skills. We want seniors and under-served citizens to have access to technology that helps them remain connected and informed. The Gateway is purpose built to strengthen our technological capabilities and our economy.”

A project of the City of Tuscaloosa, the $2.8 million Gateway facility was funded through federal appropriations from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Community Development Block Grant Disaster Relief program.

“The Gateway is only the beginning of the revitalization planned for this area,” added Kip Tyner, Tuscaloosa City Councilor for District 5. “We are bolstering a new vitality for Alberta, with fresh reasons for residents, visitors and businesses to support the area.”

The Gateway (2614 University Blvd. East), operated jointly by TALAPro and the Tuscaloosa Public Library, also features a coffee shop operated by Heritage House Coffee & Tea.

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Lake Tuscaloosa Living (LTL) is the premier community newspaper, covering the great people, places and activities of the area.


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