Industry Spotlight: Life Science Sector Surges in NYC Metro Area

Industry Spotlight: Life Science Sector Surges in NYC Metro Area

By Gregory Fortino

Here at Metropolis Group, the nature of our business provides an accurate snapshot of economic activity, especially here in the New York City metropolitan area. In recent years, the life science area has become a high-growth sector. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, we started seeing more projects that involved the three core business types encompassed by life sciences: research and development, manufacturing, and medical and diagnostic laboratories.

In 2016, the City of New York launched LifeSci NYC to encourage this sector by focusing on three key areas:

  • Creating commercial lab space and incubators
  • Spurring new research that leads to companies, jobs, and therapies
  • Building a diverse pipeline of life sciences talent

The city’s financial commitment to the initiative doubled to $1 billion in 2021.

According to a report published last year by the NYC Department of City Planning and the NYC Economic Development Corporation, the New York City metropolitan region boasts the largest life sciences economy in the United States, with more than 150,000 jobs and nearly 5,100 businesses. This geographic area includes the five boroughs and 26 counties in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.

How Metropolis Supports the Life Science Industry

In addition to ongoing obstacles like economic uncertainty and a tight labor market, life science organizations face specialized challenges, particularly in highly regulated markets like New York:

  • Municipal zoning regulations
  • Hazardous material storage
  • Life safety systems

Metropolis Group is working with building owners and developers across the country in a consulting capacity to help them determine the viability of proposed projects. We offer insight into the construction approval process and current zoning restrictions for areas under consideration. With our technical knowledge of construction codes and zoning resolutions, we understand the nuances and pitfalls associated with different markets. We can help architects and engineers during the design phase, resulting in speedier approvals.

We also support the life science sector through our involvement in Builds Bio+, an organization that unites life science, innovation, design, and real estate professionals in the Greater New York Metro area, including western Pennsylvania. As members of the Regulatory Leadership Committee, which I chair, we help tenants, building owners, and developers navigate the complex regulations and requirements in locating life science applications throughout the region.

For assistance with your life science project or other code and zoning questions, contact Metropolis Group at 212.233.6344.