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This article was reported by Marissa Montgomery with Apex Systems

UCF board members announced on February 19 that they are adding funding for a new UCF downtown campus to the list it sends to the state legislature for funding approval. The proposed campus would house programs on interactive entertainment, digital media, art and film as well as other programs and help jump start the Creative Village downtown.

We asked local tech leaders their thoughts on the development:

“[The downtown campus is] the kickstart we needed to help realize Orlando’s Creative Village as the future world capital for Digital Media & Video Games. I don’t think there will be any other place on Earth where infrastructure and talent can be as concentrated with big and small teams alike” – Kunal Patel, President Phyken Media & Co-Founder of Indienomicon

“If you’ve been to big cities you’ve seen first hand what colleges can do to shape a downtown. From Columbia in New York to Georgetown in DC to UF in Gainsville, colleges can play a big role in an urban center. I’m a huge fan of bringing students from the east side of our city to downtown.” – Gregg Pollack, Envy Labs, Starter Studio Code School, Orlando Tech

“I am such a fan of the way UCF has been embraced by the Orlando community. Growing up here, I still remember when they had a campaign asking people to root for the home team (meaning not UF or FSU) and it seems like it is finally happening. The Downtown Campus is just one more way that shows Orlando supports UCF.” – Bess Auer, Florida Blog Con

“UCF Downtown is a community-wide effort, and support for this project has been outstanding, especially from growing tech companies in the immediate downtown area. We’re excited about the opportunities for our students and faculty to partner and further collaborate with Orlando’s creative and high-tech industry.” – Christine Dellert, Senior Director of Communications at UCF

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