FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 4, 2005
MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG'S SPEECH TO CIBC WORLD MARKETS ANNUAL BIOTECHNOLOGY & SPECIALTY PHARMACEUTICALS CONFERENCE
Announces $12 million State Grant for East River Science Park
The following is the text of Mayor Bloomberg’s Address as delivered at Millennium Broadway Hotel:
Good afternoon everyone.
Compatibility and teamwork is what New York City has to offer the biotechnology industry.
We have the liveliest, most livable, and safest big city in the U.S....
We have an incomparable, business-friendly financial, marketing, and medical research infrastructure... And we have a long-term strategy for diversifying the city's economy-a strategy in which we see biotech as a key player in our lineup.
Let me say a few words about each of those points in turn, starting with the city's livability.
After 9/11, many people thought that New York would lose the gains we made during the 90s.
We've proved that wrong. Over the last three years, we've cut City tax levy spending by $3.8 billion; we've reduced the city workforce by 16,000 employees.
Under our Administration, City agencies have learned to do more with less-and by virtually every standard, our quality of life is better now than it was four years ago.
At the same time that we've protected New York against terrorism, we've also kept this the safest big city in the nation. Crime today is nearly 22% lower than it was four years ago.
Fire and traffic fatalities are at World War I-era levels. Our streets are cleaner than they've been in 30 years.
We're home to some of the best public schools in the U.S. David Bauer, this year's top Intel Scholar, is a student at our Hunter College High School-He also plans to pursue his studies at our public City College.
And we're on course to making our entire public school system the best in the nation.
Because we've improved our quality of life, our economy is moving forward. We've had 20 consecutive months when the number of employed New Yorkers has increased.
And New York remains the most exciting city on earth. In February, hundreds of thousands of people flocked to New York from around the globe for "The Gates" in Central Park.
It was a 16-day event that generated $254 million in business for the city... produced invaluable worldwide advertising... and sent the same message that last night's ballgame delivered: Whether your interest is cutting-edge cultural expression... or championship-caliber baseball... there's only one New York.
We're also the nation's most business-friendly city. There is no place better for developing, testing, and marketing new ideas and new products.
New York is the world leader in business services: Five of the ten biggest worldwide advertising firms are headquartered here.
So are eight of the world's top ten public relations firms... five of the 20 biggest U.S. law firms...five of the ten largest consulting companies...and four of the ten biggest insurance companies.
We're home to more than 200 international banks representing every major country in the world. The communications, entertainment and publishing businesses make us the media capital of the world as well.
Then there's our robust biotech infrastructure, and our deep pool of talent in this growing industry.
For too long, these assets have been hiding in plain sight. They have been overshadowed by other aspects of New York's economy.
And, truth be told, they haven't been as effectively marshaled and marketed as they could have been.
But our Economic Development Corporation is working hard to change that. They are crisscrossing the globe to tell New York's biotech story-and quite a story it is, too.
Because the fact is, no one can match what New York has: A metropolitan area with three dozen renowned academic, medical and research institutions that have received $1.2 billion each year in funding from the National Institutes of Health.
That's $25 million each week of the year.
We have a pool of 25,000 research scientists. In fact, 128 of the nation's Nobel Laureates have studied and worked, or are now working, in New York City.
Many biotech industry leaders, including Amgen, Imclone and OSI, have conducted their research in New York City institutions.
We are, in short, a natural hub for the commercial life sciences.
To capitalize on these spectacular resources, our Administration is developing the "East River Science Park."
It will have more than 870,000 square feet of laboratory and office space, perfect for both established firms and also for start-up companies.
Too often, the pattern has been that firms which now begin in labs at Rockefeller University, for example, or at other research institutions in New York, move out of the city as they develop and expand.
The East River Science Park will stop that trend, and let biotech startups grow right here in New York City, where they can continue to take full advantage of all our city has to offer.
The East River Science Park will be located along Manhattan's East Side biomedical corridor, the home of five of our top academic research institutions, as well as several major hospitals.
Five experienced life science developers have submitted bids for the facility, and we'll be selecting one of them soon.
It's going to be a public-private development. Our Administration just helped get $12 million for New York City bioscience into the State budget adopted last week-and we're going to continue working for additional State support for the East River Science Park as well as other bioscience projects.
The New York City Investment Fund, which is headed by Russ Carson and Henry Kravis, has also pledged $10 million for this project. That's their biggest investment ever, and a major vote of confidence in New York City's biotech future.
We think that's going to be a bright future.
Our Administration has a five-borough strategy for economic growth. It's based on making New York City more livable, more business-friendly, and more economically diverse.
With a forecast of 50,000 new private sector jobs this year, it's a strategy that's working.
But we're not resting on our laurels.
Biotech represents an enormous opportunity to diversify our economy-And create thousands of new well-paying jobs for New Yorkers.
It's an opportunity we intend to seize.
Biotech is already a major industry in our city. We're the home to 90 bioscience companies-ranging from the newest, smallest start-ups to Pfizer, the world's largest pharmaceutical company.
And with a new spirit of teamwork between your industry and our Administration, the best days for biotech in New York are yet to come.
Thank you, and I look forward to working closely with all of you in the years ahead.
Edward Skyler / Jennifer Falk (212) 788-2958