Press release

Driving forward with innovation: relocation of the EUROCONTROL Innovation Hub to the Paris-Saclay Innovation Playground

The 41 EUROCONTROL Member States have agreed to the relocation of the EUROCONTROL Innovation Hub (EIH) to the Paris-Saclay Innovation Playground. The project will see EUROCONTROL build a new, state-of-the-art simulation and innovation centre at the EU’s major new innovation hub, located just outside Paris.

Aviation is facing a series of major challenges. Demand for civil air traffic is expected to continue to grow, military requirements are increasing and new entrants such as drones or higher airspace operations need to be integrated into an increasingly saturated network. In parallel, the requirement to reach NetZero by 2050 is an existential issue for the industry.

To address these challenges, EUROCONTROL has a strategic need to strengthen its own research and innovation services for the benefit of its Member States and stakeholders. The ambition is to evolve the existing EUROCONTROL Innovation Hub into a centre for collaborative innovation for European aviation. To reach this ambition, EIH requires new, dynamic, sustainable facilities, and an easily accessible location within a strong innovation ecosystem.

The Paris-Saclay Innovation Playground, one of the top 8 innovation clusters worldwide and the top cluster in the EU, is the ideal location for the centre. Hosting the Paris-Saclay University, more than 700 start-ups, major aviation organisations and businesses such as Airbus and Thales. Access to this ecosystem will support the Agency’s drive to recruit and retain a dynamic workforce as well as facilitate the strategic partnerships needed to drive EUROCONTROL’s innovation activities for the coming decades.

“People, technology and innovation are at the heart of the EUROCONTROL project. This new site will allow us to continue to be leaders in innovation while supporting our Member States from one of the most dynamic and exciting R&I areas in the world.”

“We are very honoured and excited by the choice of EUROCONTROL to set up its new Innovation Hub at the heart of our international cluster of Paris-Saclay. We are convinced that EUROCONTROL will benefit from – and bring a lot to - our rich academic and industrial innovation ecosystem, giving birth to unique partnership opportunities. Besides, Paris-Saclay offers a comprehensive environment to welcome the families of international employees including a new hospital and an international public high school, but also first-quality family housing programs, just 20mn away from Paris and 13 minutes away from Orly international airport by September 2026 with the new line 18 of the Grand Paris Express”.

Martin Guespereau General Manager, EPA Paris-Saclay - the Paris-Saclay Development Authority

“Paris-Saclay conurbation is very proud to welcome EUROCONTROL in the heart of our scientific cluster. Paris-Saclay is an attractive and dynamic ecosystem. Thanks to its scientific rich ecosystem, it is among the world's greatest hubs and has significant influence at the regional, national, and international levels. Its numerous assets give it a potential with few equivalents in the world, bringing together academic institutions, research centers, and globally well-known businesses. Thanks to the concentration of major groups, innovative SMEs associated with a world-class university center (13th in the Shanghai Ranking), Paris-Saclay is one of the eight largest innovation clusters in the world, according to MIT."

Grégoire de Lasteyrie President, Paris-Saclay conurbation

Note to Editors

About the Paris-Saclay Development Authority

The Paris-Saclay Development Authority drives and coordinates the development of Paris-Saclay scientific and technological cluster and the promotion of its international scope and outreach. The authority acts as the developer for the joint development zones located within the scope of the OIN (Operation of National Interest).

With 15% of national research and 40% of public and private research jobs in the Paris region, this area, which stretches from Massy to Versailles via Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, is one of the most powerful innovation clusters in the world.

The Paris-Saclay Development Authority is mobilizing economic players to stimulate growth around strategic sectors (information and communication technologies, healthcare, energy, aeronautics-security-defense, mobility). Together with the Paris-Saclay University and the Institut polytechnique de Paris, it federates academic players to strengthen links between public and private research and promote innovation and entrepreneurship.

Paris-Saclay's development is structured around three main zones:

  1. The Urban Campus, the scientific heart of the cluster on the southern fringe of the Saclay plateau;
  2. Versailles Satory, where a cluster dedicated to the mobility of the future is being developed in a natural setting;
  3. And the Guyancourt - Saint-Quentin station district. All these districts will be linked by line 18 of the Grand Paris Express from 2026.

The Paris-Saclay Development Authority aims to create lively, innovative and sustainable neighborhoods capable of meeting the needs of the cluster: the arrival of research and higher education establishments, the establishment of businesses, improved transport links, the creation of housing and public facilities in a privileged environment, including the 4115 hectares of a natural, agricultural and forestry protection zone.

As a laboratory for sustainable cities, Paris-Saclay defines and implements innovative solutions - often unprecedented on this scale - in favor of the ecological transition.

Press contact:

Rumeur Publique
Email: [email protected]
Lorraine Froment: 06 16 31 64 92
Samy Cherifia: 06 14 65 74 99

EPA Paris-Saclay
Email: [email protected]
Romain Forsans: 01 64 54 36 64

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EUROCONTROL is a pan-European, civil-military organisation dedicated to supporting European aviation. As Europe’s Network Manager, we play a central coordination role, using our technical expertise to support Member States and a wide range of stakeholders (air navigation service providers, civil and military airspace users, airports and aircraft/equipment manufacturers). We strive to make European aviation safe, efficient, scalable, cost-effective and environmentally sustainable, partnering with the European Union to make the Single European Sky a reality.

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