OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. – Osceola County commissioners are expected to vote on approval for an exclusive contract that will further develop NeoCity — a project that’s already creating a path for the county’s own tech hub and is expected to be the future home for professionals in the technologies industry.
“We want people to be able to bring up their kids in Osceola County but those kids can then go to school go to college, come back and work in Osceola County and not leave their family and have a high-paying job,” County commissioner Cheryl Grieb said.
Grieb said county leaders have been working on this development since 2014.
“We really needed to diversify our economy in Osceola County. I always tell people we have tourism on the west and ag on the east and neither one of those are really high paying,” Grieb said.
Located between Kissimmee and St. Cloud, on the edge of Lake Tohopekaliga, NeoCity is expected to be a catalyst for high-tech innovation and creation.
“We’re looking at about 4,000 direct jobs because of what’s happening at NeoCity that doesn’t take into account all the indirect jobs as well,” Grieb said.
She added the types of professionals needed will be those within the technologies and biochemistry industries.
“While we may not have those individuals right now in Osceola County, that’s part of that whole connection with NeoCity Academy our connection with UCF, the University of Florida and various other universities around the state,” Grieb said.
Currently, there are three buildings on the site. One is a fabrication building where different types of technologies are developed and the NeoCity Academy — a public high school with 550 students.
“The concept is that they learn a lot about the STEM the sciences, technologies, engineering, math and then they’ll be able to work side by side with some of the folks that are developing these specialized sensors at the fab and get some real-life experience,” Grieb said.
According to Osceola County, more than $100 million have gone into development for what they call “Center for Neovation.” Commissioners will be voting on an exclusivity period to negotiate a $1.2 billion investment contract with a South Korean company for 25 acres of land.
“It’s mixed-use, where you would have entertainment, you would have a place where you can get your specialty coffee, live in a condo be able to do the 5K walk around the pond,” Grieb said. “It’s a true city and not just any city, it’ll be a smart city. So, it’s the first of its kind.”