Aerial view of the SPARC campus within the Manhattan skyline. Credit: SOM/Mysis

New Master Plan and Design RFP Advance SPARC Kips Bay Project, Future Anchor of NYC Life Sciences Industry

Project Will Create More Than 15,000 Jobs, Generate $42 Billion in Economic Impact

New York City Mayor Eric Adams, New York Governor Kathy Hochul, the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC), and The City University of New York (CUNY) today unveiled the Science Park and Research Campus (SPARC) Kips Bay Master Plan for this first-of-its-kind life sciences career and education hub that will anchor the industry in New York. Arriving just over one year since SPARC Kips Bay was announced, the master plan unveils key project details, including a new site plan and conceptual design, a new model for education and job training pipelines, and updated economic impact projections showing how significantly it will further New York City’s role as a global leader in creating and attracting accessible jobs in life sciences, health care, and public health by creating a pipeline from local public schools to careers in these essential sectors. The project is expected to create more than 15,000 total jobs and generate $42 billion in economic impact. 

In addition to the master plan, the Adams administration launched a new community task force led by NYCEDC to shape and steer the project’s vision and released a request for proposals (RFP) for design of key public space, community infrastructure, and a pedestrian bridge for the project’s first phase. The major steps for this critical project come as part of Mayor Adams’ “Working People’s Tour,” continuing to create jobs and power New York City’s economic recovery after the city recovered all of the nearly 1 million jobs lost during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“It’s no secret that New York City has the most talented workers, and the SPARC Kips Bay campus will continue this legacy by creating more than 12,000 jobs right here in Manhattan,” said Mayor Adams. “This campus will be a bridge to the next generation, preparing New York City students of today for the jobs of tomorrow in a rapidly growing sector with higher education opportunities through our academic partners at CUNY and internships at every level. This project will help us create a healthier, more prosperous city through true community engagement and public-private partnership.” 

“The SPARC Kips Bay Master Plan is New York’s road map to establishing a hub for innovation, job growth, and education in the life sciences right in the heart of Manhattan,” said Governor Hochul. “With a projected 15,000 jobs and $42 billion in economic impact over the next 30 years, SPARC Kips Bay will help to build on statewide efforts like New York’s transformative Life Science Initiative to grow 21st-century businesses and jobs and ensure that the future of medicine starts in New York.”
With new details and projections released in the master plan, SPARC Kips Bay is now expected to generate approximately $42 billion in economic impact over the next 30 years; create 15,000 jobs, including12,000 construction and 3,100 permanent jobs in the life sciences sector; and transform an entire city block — with up to 2 million square feet of academic, public health, and life sciences space, advancing the LifeSci NYC goal of 10 million square feet of life sciences space by 2030.

View of SPARC Kips Bay, looking northeast from First Avenue and 25th Street. Credit: SOM/ Miysis
View from SPARC Square, looking west. Credit: SOM/Mysis

The project will continue this legacy of successful public-private partnerships to help New York grow its life sciences industry, as supported by LifeSci NYC — a $1 billion initiative overseen by NYCEDC — to create 40,000 jobs over the next 10 to 15 years. Most recently, Mayor Adams and Governor Hochul announced alongside the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) plans for the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub New York, a new biomedical research hub in New York City that will leverage a nearly $300 million public-private investment to drive collaboration between leading research institutions and solve significant scientific challenges.

SPARC Kips Bay Master Plan: The SPARC Kips Bay Master Plan outlines key new project details, including a new site plan and conceptual design of the transformation of this city block. Additional highlights of the SPARC Master Plan include:

Transforming the Hunter College Brookdale Campus into a more public and inviting campus with active ground floor spaces, neighborhood-serving retail, and public spaces for the community;

A unique model for education and job training that co-locates secondary and post-secondary education with industry and public health institutions to better connect New Yorkers to new career pathways through hands-on learning and training at all stages of their careers; and

Establishing a unified plan to implement the project that meets both the needs of the campus institutions and broader neighborhood.

Community Task Force: In addition to the master plan, NYCEDC launched the SPARC Kips Bay Community Task Force — co-chaired by New York City Councilmember Keith Powers and Manhattan Community Board 6 — to facilitate a substantive partnership with local stakeholders. The task force will convene on a regular basis and engage elected leaders, civic advocates, residents, and local community partners.

Workforce Development Task Force: NYCEDC and the Mayor’s Office of Talent and Workforce Development will also convene the SPARC Kips Bay Education, Training, and Workforce Development Task Forcealongside CUNY, the New York City Department of Education (DOE), the New York City Office of Chief Medical Examiner (OCME), NYC Health + Hospitals (H+H), and citywide industry and workforce organizations to help shape the workforce opportunity at the future campus. The task force will inform new curriculum development to support the industries at SPARC Kips Bay and advance apprenticeships and other career-connected learning models to leverage the co-location of education and public and private industry.

First Phase of Design RFP: NYCEDC is releasing an RFP to procure a designer for the first phase of the project, including modern facilities for CUNY and DOE and long-overdue community infrastructure — notably one acre of new open space and improved public realm investment, neighborhood resiliency, and a new universally accessible pedestrian bridge at East 25th Street.

Tech Forward Life Sciences Center: NYCEDC is releasing a request for expressions of interest in Q1 2024 to solicit interest from academic, research, and newly formed consortia to establish a Tech Forward Life Sciences Center at SPARC Kips Bay.
SPARC Kips Bay will be anchored by new, modern facilities for students from the Hunter College School of Nursing and School of Health Professions, the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy, and the Borough of Manhattan Community College’s multiple health care programs. The hub will also feature:

An H+H/Bellevue ambulatory care center that will offer screenings, same-day procedures, diagnostics, and preventative care — reducing average wait times for patients by up to seven days;

A co-locating H+H Nursing Advanced Practice Center that will serve H+H employees systemwide and allow CUNY students and others to simulate real-life medical situations in an educational setting;

A DOE FutureReady NYC high school providing hands-on and career-connected learning in health care and sciences to prepare students for secondary education and careers in these growing sectors by leveraging partnerships with partner institutions;

A new OCME Forensic Pathology Center, which will be a nation-leading training facility for forensic pathologists, with a 24/7, year-round operational schedule; and

New life sciences office space, dry and wet labs, and translational research facilities that focus on growth trends in the industry like the use of machine learning for drug discovery.

SPARC Kips Bay complements New York State’s $620 million Life Science Initiative, designed to spur the growth of a world-class life science research cluster in New York, as well as expand the state’s ability to commercialize this research and grow the economy. This multifaceted initiative includes $320 million for strategic programs that attract new life science technologies to the state, promote critical public and private sector investment in emerging life science fields and create and expand life science-related businesses and employment throughout New York.

New York City Economic Development Corporation is a mission-driven, nonprofit organization that works for a vibrant, inclusive, and globally competitive economy for all New Yorkers. We take a comprehensive approach, through four main strategies: strengthen confidence in NYC as a great place to do business; grow innovative sectors with a focus on equity; build neighborhoods as places to live, learn, work, and play; and deliver sustainable infrastructure for communities and the city’s future economy. To learn more about what we do, visit us on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn, and Instagram.

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