Earlier this week New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced that the city will be providing land for the development of a multi-billion dollar high-tech science college.
The science and research facility to be built on little-used property on Roosevelt Island is hoped to become a leading incubator for high-tech research and innovation.
Plans are for classes to start in 2012, although the campus will take years to be completed. By 2018 it aims to serve 300 students. When fully operational, the school will have 2,000 students and 300 faculty members.
Cornell University and its partner Technion-Israel Institute of Technology were chosen from six competing bids to build an applied sciences campus that officials hope will transform the city into a center for entrepreneurship and technology innovation to rival California’s Silicon Valley.
The city will put $100 million toward campus construction. It will create nearly 20,000 temporary construction jobs and 8,000 permanent jobs. The new school will spawn more than $23 billion in economic activity over the next three decades, with $1.4 billion in total tax revenue, and hopes to spin out around 600 new companies.
The university doesn’t plan on borrowing to finance the project, but will rely on tuition and philanthropy, technology license fees and corporate partnerships.
To get a better understanding of the expected benefits that will emerge from this unique institution, I spoke with Nathan Tinker, Executive Director of the New York Biotechnology Association. The trade association that he leads is dedicated to the development and growth of New York state’s biotechnology industries and institutions.