Mayor De Blasio’s new 10 year LifeSci program is a promise of transformation for the City of New York, which has already tremendously increased its tech sector, becoming the “Smart City of 2016”. A new life sciences campus is in the works making the program similar to Cornell Tech, which aims to make NYC a center for the Applied Sciences and Engineering.
New on the frontier are the Life Sciences, which would create over 16,000 jobs for New Yorkers many of which will not require advanced degrees. Altogether, the investment into the program is half a billion, with a $300 million dollar tax incentive going towards real estate space for new research labs, either on the Upper East Side or in Long Island City, amending the single biggest hurdle to developing research labs in New York City. This plan will reassign the current zones, shaking up the real estate industry, and allow the city to finally compete with the likes of Boston and Silicon Valley.
“We have a competitive advantage that we haven’t fully taken advantage of,” de Blasio said at a press conference at Alexandria Center for Life Sciences in Manhattan. “We have that infrastructure but until now many businesses have chosen to go to competitive locations” such as Boston and Silicon Valley.
But more than that, it will attract new industry professionals to the city evolving it from a financial center into a true technological and scientific center of the world. The initiative has also set aside funds for new startups and entrepreneurs to take advantage of the new opportunities provided.
The plan calls for $20 million a year toward seed and growth funding for early-stage businesses, with matching funds from private sources. The life sciences includes the fields of biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, cosmeceuticals, food processing, biomedical devices, nutraceuticals, commercialization and so much more, creating the largest new opportunity in a giant industry that will have a profound affect on other NYC sectors.
We can expect new lab space development to take priority over office and coworking spaces, investors will be taking heavy risks, and lawyers of New York will have to brush up on their medical and FDA law. There’s bound to be a lot of questions in the air, so investors and lawyers would be wise to consult with FDA Experts.
The City will also provide financing of up to $7.5 million to life sciences startups to help them secure experienced entrepreneurs to help launch and grow their businesses in New York City. These entrepreneurs will be committed to growing companies, cultivating new talent, and creating good and accessible jobs in the five boroughs. A further $3.8 million is being allocated to expand training programs for entrepreneurs.
This is the chance for anyone with new ideas and ambitions in these industries to pave a niche for themselves.
Combined with the already predominant financial sector, New York City is now poised to revolutionize tech as it becomes home to venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, engineers and researchers alike. While some may argue that the city already welcomes all types of startups and industries, the lack of available research space has caused several companies to leave New York once they grew to be a certain size. The LifeSci program is the City’s answer to this dilemma.
Other aspects of the initiative include $50 million designated for the city’s research institutions and academic medical centers to help build more space for research with high potential for commercialization, and $20 million to invest in up to 80 early-stage companies, with the city seeking matching funds from private investors.
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The ultimate takeaway? Be prepared to watch New York City become a leader in advancing healthcare and technology, while creating opportunities for companies to grow huge within the city hiring more New Yorkers.