Ilya Marritz covers business for WNYC.
Bloomberg: We Need a New Science and Tech Campus
Tuesday, July 19, 2011 - 03:26 PM
Mayor Michael Bloomberg wants to attract a major research institution to New York City — and, as incentive, is offering publicly owned land and as much as $100 million in funding to a potential partner institution to be chosen through an application process.
With lots of new startups, the city is already on the road to becoming a technology hub, Bloomberg said more could be done to speed up the process.
"Entrepreneurs feed off of innovations that emerge from laboratories — and right now, our appetite for innovation is outstripping the capacity of our labs," Bloomberg said.
The Economic Development Corporation of New York City estimates that over the next 35 years, the campus would generate an estimated $6 billion in overall economic activity, tens of thousands of jobs and hundreds of new companies.
Cornell, Stanford and the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology are among dozens of universities that have already expressed an interest in the project.
The city intends to pick a winning bid by the end of the year.
The mayor cited his own experience as an entrepreneur who founded a financial news and information company, Bloomberg LP, in 1981, with the help of computer scientists.
"Of course back then, they weren't called scientists. They were called nerds. But I could never have built the business without them, Bloomberg quipped. "Unfortunately for our city, my company was more the exception than the rule. During the 1980s and 90s, Silicon Valley – not New York – became the world capital of technology start-ups."