THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK
OFFICE OF COUNCILMAN THOMAS WHITE, JR.
145-40 Rockaway Blvd
South Ozone Park, NY 11436
**FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE**
June 10, 2009
Contact: Joshua T. Wojehowski
212-788-6850, 917-902-6136 or
COUNCIL AUTHORIZES EMPIRE ZONE BENEFITS TO FUTURE TENANTS OF
THE EAST RIVER SCIENCE PARK
Empire Zone Benefits Will Help NYC Attract and Retain Fledgling Bio-Tech Companies,
Diversifying the City’s Economy and Creating Thousands of Jobs
On Wednesday, June 10, 2009 at City Hall, Chairman Thomas White Jr. of the Economic Development
Committee, along with Speaker Quinn and his fellow colleagues voted to expand the boundaries of the
Chinatown/Lower East Side Empire Zone to include the soon to be completed East River Science Park,
which will allow future tenants to apply for Empire Zone Benefits.
The Empire Zones Program was created in 1986 by the State Legislature, and is designed to stimulate
private investment, business development and job creation through financial incentives which include
wage tax credits, real property tax credits and capital investment credits. The City has chosen to leverage
the program to create manufacturing clusters throughout disadvantaged and underutilized areas, and to
attract, retain or create strategically important businesses and industries to the City.
Although NYC has unparalleled assets for building a thriving commercial bio-tech industry; the largest
concentration of academic medical institutions in the U.S., the largest high-tech and medical workforce in
the nation with nearly 316,500 jobs overall, more than 10 highly ranked graduate programs in technology
fields, and millions of dollars in NIH (National Institutes of Health) funding, the City is sorely lacking
affordable commercial lab space.
Upon completion, the East River Science Park will be able to accommodate up to 1.1 million square feet
of commercial lab space. With the ability of emerging bio-tech, but also later stage firms to apply and
receive Empire Zone benefits, some of the high costs of locating and establishing businesses in NYC will
be partially deferred, presenting companies with viable options for remaining in New York instead of
fleeing to cities like Boston or Philadelphia.
Council Member Thomas White Jr. said, “By expanding the Empire Zone the City of New York is
taking an important step to diversify the City’s economy into new 21st century growth areas and away
from an over reliance on the success of Wall Street.
White also said, “Fledgling bio-tech companies will now be able to apply for Empire Zone benefits if
they take advantage of the more than 1.1 million square feet of commercial lab space that will be
available upon completion of the East River Science Park, enabling the City of New York to leverage the
largest concentration of bioscience workers in the United States, along with the technology, inventions
and cures that are created or spawned from our world renowned medical facilities, universities, and
research institutions only to find home in Cities like Boston or Philadelphia.”