CU-ICAR Forward

In 2015, we are celebrating 10 years since the original Master Plan for Clemson University’s International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR) was developed.  Quoting from this Master Plan, CU-ICAR is about “people – students, faculty, scientists, technologists, visitors and friends”, all coming to a campus designed to “bring people together” and provide “spaces for people to meet, talk, plan and celebrate.”  CU-ICAR was initially conceived to “be a shining technology city” with each Neighborhood “a dense urban cluster of buildings” focused on bringing people together.  These ingredients make up a recipe for an international icon, one that our many partners can be proud of.

After over a decade, it is time once again to consider the future of Clemson University’s International Center for Automotive Research. The original Master Plan was completed in 2005 and provided a sustainable framework for growth and development of the campus. Many aspects of this plan have been successfully implemented over the last ten years. As we acknowledge the changing needs of the global automotive industry, we recognize that 2016 is an appropriate time to embark upon a master plan update. This effort will assist in determining the vision, goals, strategic partnerships, and physical plan for the next phase of CU-ICAR’s campus development.

The Master Plan Update will also consider the larger context of the Greenville region, in combination with the University, state and city goals for elevating research, creating opportunity for a skilled workforce, and increasing economic development within a sustainable and collaborative physical environment. The outcomes of the Campus Master Plan will help to differentiate CU-ICAR and create a distinctive destination – through outstanding academic and research programs, a vibrant urban campus life, and a compelling physical presence.


Join the Conversation

The CU-ICAR Master Planning Committee welcomes your thoughts and feedback. We invite you to take one of the surveys below or email with thoughts, ideas and inquiries.

CU-ICAR Community at Large Survey

Survey for Clemson University Students, Faculty & Staff

Survey for Industry Partners


Master Planning Process

The CU-ICAR Master Plan Update is organized around three primary phases: (1) Discovery & Analysis, (2) Alternatives, and (3) Documentation. The master planning process is intended to be strategic, data-informed, iterative, and inclusive. It will require engagement and input from CU-ICAR and Clemson University leadership, private industry representatives, and a broad base of campus and community constituents. The input received from each of these groups will be instrumental in ensuring that the planning process moves forward in an efficient and responsive manner. The master planning process is expected to be complete by June 2016.



Initial Steps

The vision for CU-ICAR is “to be the premier research, education and innovation enterprise in the world.” This is no small task and requires the long-term commitment of talent and resources from multiple stakeholders. As Henry Ford once said, “Before everything else, getting ready is the secret of success.” CU-ICAR has been getting ready. The launch of a successful Automotive Engineering program, contributions in key areas of research and completion of Technology Neighborhood I have been our first steps. We have built a strong foundation, upon which we can expect even greater success. In 2015 we began to revisit out Masterplan by hosting a series of stakeholder meetings involving industry, university and community leaders. Recommendations from these stakeholders help us set the stage for what is to come at CU-ICAR. Planning will continue into 2016.



Operating with its own independent board of directors and president, Clemson University Land Stewardship Foundation Inc. is a 501(c)(3) affiliate of Clemson University and the Clemson University Foundation. In 2015 the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) granted $395,000 in funds from the Regional Innovation Strategies program’s Science and Research Park Development Grants competition to CULSF to fund the development of a new master plan for CU-ICAR. The new Master Plan will address the demands for workforce development, education, and the nature of the surrounding community, which have all changed substantially over the last decade and will better position CU-ICAR to serve its multiple constituencies and to become an even stronger force driving the South Carolina economy.


Questions or comments? Please email our offices at