Next Steps in Long Island’s Innovation Economy

Michele A. Pincus, Esq., Partner, Sahn Ward Coschignano, PLLC 1/26/16

Land Use
With the decline of the defense industry on Long Island, what will take its place? Enter the new innovation economy. It begins with the globally renowned institutions like Brookhaven National Lab and Cold Spring Harbor Lab. Brookhaven Lab is the only national lab located in the Northeast and one of New York State’s largest centers of scientific research. It places place special emphasis on growing the technology-based elements of the Long Island economy. BNL’s almost 3,000 scientists, engineers, and support staff are joined each year by more than 4,000 visiting researchers from around the world. From humble beginnings in 1890 CSH Lab has become a preeminent international research institution, achieving breakthroughs in molecular biology and genetics and enhancing scientific knowledge worldwide with employees and students totaling 1100. We also have the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research composed of more than 1,500 clinicians, scientists and staff who work in laboratories and clinical research programs in collaboration with clinicians and patients throughout the many facilities of North Shore-LIJ.

Long Island is home to support organizations like ListNet which promotes Long Island as one of the national centers of excellence for Software and Technology solutions by facilitating collaborations between companies, and partnering with companies that provide the High technology Centers necessary for the growth of Long Island. Accelerate Long Island is a unique collaboration among Long Island’s world class research institutions and its business community to commercialize research and create an entrepreneurial ecosystem. Stony Brook University houses an incubator program that offers laboratory space, production facilities, and support to technology, science and food start-up companies, helping them grow by providing a variety ofsupport resources and services. Co-working spaces like Launch Pad are springing up and shows that Long island is home to a growing community of entrepreneurs and start-up companies. Long Island now needs to create the communities to support these companies and their workforces. The time to start is now.
The plan should be a logical one. Our research institutions are producing innovative work product that can be commercialized by our entrepreneurs. Our communities now need to focus on the fact that the growth of the innovation economy is the way to create jobs and grow business on Long Island. These growing companies will need space and workers. Our land use planning in our towns and villages must look for ways to attract these businesses and their employees to want to live and work here. Growing our downtowns near mass transit is a great place to start.
 

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