March 8, 2012 at 4:09 AM EST - Updated June 26 at 5:18 PM
WEST PALM BEACH, FL (WFLX) The city of West Palm Beach continues to work on a promise to make room for economic development. This time in the form of technology and education.
On Monday, the Digital Domain Institute will hold its first classes in CityPlace, paving the way for the institute to open downtown.
As digital media becomes more advanced, the popularity of the Digital Domain Institute has grown.
That has caught the eye of West Palm Beach Commissioner Kimberly Mitchell. She says the partnership of FSU and the institute will guarantee three things. "Economic development, cultural and social endeavors in the city," says Mitchell.
The institute is building its new facility on Okeechobee Boulevard. Until construction is complete, classes will be held at CityPlace. Courses begin Monday with about 20 students.
Eventually, thousands will attend and that will have a significant impact on downtown housing.
"It will fill up our housing stock that is sitting in a lull, it will fill are rental occupancy," Mitchell says.
In order to make next week's classes available commissioners had to change zoning policies. It was a unanimous yes.
"Up until Monday you could only have retail and similar restaurants so we added educational opportunities for class rooms," Mitchell says.
Commissioner Bill Moss says those educational opportunities will put West Palm Beach on the map and give it a digital identity. "All the movies, at least half are now 1/2 animation, it's the future," says Moss.
Bruce Bullock is the Director of Education for the institute. He says with the daily progression of digital media, the job market is promising for its graduates. "Digital media is an area which is going to affect more of our lives in terms of medicine, architecture and our military," says Bullock.
So whether it's a career in production, visual effects or lighting the institute offers it all for those looking to make digital magic.
The official campus is expected to open in 3 years.