Three Colorado-based technology entities have received awards – totaling $2 million – to create technology hubs that will advance key technology areas, grow regional economies, and create new job opportunities for state residents.

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis worked alongside the Business Funding & Incentives Division of the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) and the Colorado Economic Development Commission (EDC) to set up the Colorado Technology Hub Development Grant awards.

In September 2023, the EDC and OEDIT designated $2 million to support the development of the Colorado Technology Hubs as part of the Federal Fast Forward Program designed to maximize Colorado’s ability to leverage Federal funding opportunities.

“From our world-class institutions of higher education to our highly talented and educated workforce, Colorado is home to so much amazing innovation. We are developing the technologies of tomorrow right here, and Colorado Technology Hubs will ensure our state continues to be a national leader,” said Gov. Polis in a press release.

According to the governor’s office, the three recipients will focus on “developing the state’s clean tech, infrastructure, cyber, and aerospace and defense industries,” with additional attention to increasing the state’s ability to develop new technologies, transition those technologies from the lab to the private sector, and build them in Colorado.

The Colorado CleanRange Coalition will receive up to $625,000 to support Colorado’s leading role in the adoption of clean energy technologies.

In this effort the coalition will develop the CleanRange Connect platform. The platform will include a statewide asset database to support regular coalition meetings, launch a Virtual CleanRange Accelerator and Testbed Network to foster innovation of new technologies, and implement a workforce development initiative to identify key skill gaps and provide targeted training for Colorado’s workforce.

Resilient & Adaptive Cyber Protection of Industrial Control Devices & Systems (RAPIDS) will also receive up to $625,000. With this funding, RAPIDS plans to enhance cybersecurity for critical environmental and national security infrastructure starting with the Colorado River.

The RAPIDS consortium plans to develop a series of initiatives such as developing college-level cybersecurity curriculums, enhancing the critical infrastructure cybersecurity workforce, and creating a model for the secure management of rivers nationwide.

Lastly, the Securing Space Assets Coalition will receive up to $750,000 to enhance Colorado’s competitive edge in aerospace, defense, and cybersecurity. Specifically, the consortium seeks to leverage partnerships with foundational research labs to provide data science, cyber technology, and business resources in support of Colorado’s space economy.

All three Colorado Tech Hubs grew out of the TechHubNow! Initiative, a public-private initiative launched by Gov. Polis in April 2023 to position Colorado for Federal designation as a Regional Technology and Innovation Hub under the CHIPS and Science Act.

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Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez
Lisbeth Perez is a MeriTalk State and Local Staff Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.