N.Y. seeks to be high-tech hub
NEW YORK — Just as a trench dug in the 1800s created a shortcut to the nation's interior and helped make New York a global trading hub, the city is now hoping for another “Erie Canal moment” with a high-tech research complex to be built on an island in the East River.
The idea is to create an applied-sciences university where engineers also are trained as entrepreneurs from day one. Proponents say New York, home to powerful global companies and now exploding with technological startups, could shift this sector into top gear if the latest findings went straight into new businesses.
“Today we're second only to Silicon Valley as a tech center, and we don't like to be second to anybody,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.
The $2 billion, 10-acre campus planned for Roosevelt Island is being called CornellNYC Tech and is a partnership between the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and Cornell University, which has its main site in the upstate town of Ithaca but also has a major presence in New York City with its medical school.
CornellNYC Tech expects to generate $1 billion or more in tax revenue over several decades, plus tens of thousands of construction jobs.