By Al Barbarino
The city reached an agreement with Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and the City University of New York today for the construction of two new state-of-the-art science and medical facilities on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.
The city will sell a 66,000 s/f site at 525 East 73rd Street for $215 million, what Mayor Bloomberg called “easily one of the largest real estate transactions the city has ever been involved in” during a live press conference.
MSKCC will cover roughly 70 percent of the asking price and CUNY will pay the rest, said a spokesperson for the New York City Economic Development, which negotiated the agreement.
Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center will construct an up to 750,000 s/f cancer care facility and CUNY Hunter College will build an up to 336,000 s/f Science and Health Professions building to upgrade its science and nursing facilities.
“Thanks to our innovative approach to economic development, today’s announcement is yet another step towards making New York City home to the world’s most talented workforce,” Bloomberg said. “Not only will these two great institutions play a critical role in creating great jobs in one of the city’s growing industries, but they usher in the innovators and medical advancements of tomorrow.”
A Newmark Grubb Knight Frank team made up of Mark S. Weiss, Justin DiMare and Howard Kesseler represented Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in the purchase and identified a replacement site for a Department of Sanitation garage that was originally planned for the site.
“In doing so, we were able to arrange the acquisition of the 73rd Street site, which is large enough for MSKCC to expand its New York City footprint and for CUNY to develop the Hunter College Science and Health Professions Building, advancing both institution’s important roles in New York City,” Weiss said.
The Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center will be well-positioned near the hospital’s main campus at 1275 York Ave. and will provide outpatient treatment programs for patients with lung, head, neck and hematological cancers and will include state-of-the-art outpatient bone marrow transplantation services.
“This new facility will play a critically important role in our overall cancer care delivery system,” said Dr. Craig B. Thompson, president and CEO of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, in a statement. “It will have a patient-oriented physical design – equipped with almost everything patients will need under one roof – making their experience as streamlined and easy as possible.”
The site will also enable CUNY Hunter to create consolidated science and nursing facilities, eliminating the need for duplicate eating halls, libraries and other facilities at the current 25th Street campus, which will ultimately be vacated, the school’s president said.
“The relationship between Hunter College and Memorial Sloan-Kettering underscores Mayor Bloomberg’s unwavering support for STEM and for public education, and highlights the great importance of public and private collaborations,” said Jennifer J. Raab, president of CUNY Hunter College. “We are proud of the many contributions Hunter College is making to science and will continue to make, expanding its work in neuroscience and cancer research, as we train the next generation of scientists, particularly minorities and women, in conjunction with Memorial Sloan-Kettering.”
The project is expected to create more than 3,200 construction jobs and nearly 830 permanent jobs, according to an analysis conducted by the New York City Economic Development Corporation, capitalizing on considerable growth that’s occurring in science, technology and research fields in New York.
Currently there are nearly 400 venture capital firms investing over $560 million in healthcare and biomedical innovation in the city and almost 100 companies based in the biotech, medical device, and biomedical IT industries, according to data from Mayor Bloomberg’s office.