Strategies & Initiatives
Bioscience and Tech
The biotech industry is flourishing in New Haven, and Economic Development works with companies founded in, moving to, and expanding in New Haven to locate office and lab space. Recent examples include the move of Alexion Pharmaceuticals back to New Haven and the constant investment in, and expansion of, Science Park, the formerly dilapidated industrial factories now re-designated for scientific research. Altogether, these projects create jobs for New Haveners, expand the city’s tax base, and repurpose industrial factories and underutilized land to bring economic activity to the city’s neighborhoods.
Advanced Manufacturing and Food
Manufacturing and food services are important components of New Haven's overall economy, both with great specialization and advanced fabrication methods. New Haven is home to several specialty manufacturers as well as numerous high quality food producers and distributors—not to mention our many fabulous restaurants. The Office of Economic Development works to ensure the success and future growth of our local companies. Additionally, Economic Development supports the expansion of these sectors by supporting local entrepreneurship and through attracting foreign companies to join our industrial clusters.
New Haven is a hotbed for innovation. Many innovative startups spin out of Yale University, its School of Management, and its School of Medicine. Economic Development helps these startups grow into thriving businesses, while also supporting New Haven’s greater innovation ecosystem, which includes co-working spaces, maker spaces, and an innovation district. These efforts not only make New Haven a top destination for innovative entrepreneurs to move, but also make innovation accessible to all New Haven residents. In June 2017, New Haven was designated an official “Innovation Place” and will receive up to $2 million in implementation grant funds this year to build upon New Haven’s innovation, entrepreneurship, and business communities. One major initiative is District NHV, a 100,000 sq. ft. tech campus currently under construction on the site of the former Connecticut Transit garage in the Fair Haven section of the city.
This project is the City of New Haven's ambitious effort to replace Route 34, a 0.8 mile limited-access highway that cuts through Downtown. In its place, the City has planned two urban boulevards and new or rebuilt crossings. Downtown Crossing is taking back approximately 10.5 acres of land formerly used as a highway and is putting them to good use generating jobs and growing our tax base. In addition, the project will improve New Haven’s connectivity, increase its walkability, and create more vibrant street life—three highly in demand urban qualities. We completed Phase I in 2016 with the opening of Alexion’s world headquarters at 100 College Street, and we are currently working on Phase II, the redevelopment of the former Coliseum site. For more information, visit the Downtown Crossing Website here.
On the border of Yale-New Haven Hospital and the Yale School of Medicine, Hill-to-Downtown is perfectly positioned to absorb future expansions of either institution as well as the demands of the many spin-off biotech firms looking for lab and office space in New Haven. Altogether, the Hill-to-Downtown Project envisions remaking the district into a vibrant, walkable, and mixed-use neighborhood that centers around a newly-created public green space by expanding the existing medical district, promoting infrastructure investments, and improving the street network. The first phase of the project will result in $100-150 million invested to construct 150 apartments, 7,000 square feet of retail, 120,000 square feet of research space, and 50,000 square feet of offices. To view the Hill-to-Downtown Community Plan, click here.
Improving New Haven’s water front results in significant returns in quality of life and the desirability of living in New Haven. As a first step, the City won $1 million in state funds for responsible growth projects that create jobs in the Long Wharf area, half of which went to infrastructure improvements, including a two-way cycle track and a more organized area for food trucks. The other half is currently being utilized to develop a Responsible Growth Plan for the area. We are also reopening the Long Wharf Visitor Information Center, which will provide food, tourism information and other promotional items to the thousands of people traveling Interstate 95 every day. Additionally, the City is constructing a new $40 million boathouse, education, and waterfront recreation center that will restore the public’s access to the waterfront and be available to host a variety of water-related activities. Visit this page to learn more about The Long Wharf Responsible Growth Plan.
Port of New Haven (Channel Deepening)
The port is ranked #52 in the nation for both domestic (7.1 million short tons) and foreign trade (2.7 million short tons) based on 2015 volume. The Port of New Haven moves 75 percent of the annual tonnage entering through Connecticut ports. To maintain its global competitiveness, New Haven is conducting a study with the Army Corps of Engineers on the feasibility of deepening the channel from 35 feet to 40+ feet. The study is being carried out in tandem with the environmental impact study and is expected to take three years to complete.
Tweed Airport (Runway Expansion)
While the Tweed Airport Authority continues its aggressive air service development program, it is increasingly clear that the airport will need to enhance its financial incentive packages and extend runway 2-20 to attract new service. The Federal Aviation Administration has approved Tweed’s Capital Improvement Plan that includes expanding the runway from 5,600 feet, to 7,200 feet. While awaiting State approval, Tweed is accepting bids from contractors to establish sound insulation programs to benefit homes within the surrounding community.
Union Station / State Street Station
The Metro-North Railroad’s New Haven Line set a record in 2016 with 40.5 million riders, a 20,000 person increase from 2015. To accommodate the greater demand, the Office of Economic Development is working with the Connecticut Department of Transportation on the construction of a second parking garage at Union Station. In addition, the City of New Haven secured a five-year operating lease extension for Park New Haven—maintaining local control.
In 2002, as part of the I-95 project, CT DOT constructed a new station on State Street in Downtown New Haven that provided easy access to and from Downtown for commuters and attracted new investment in the area. A ten million dollar second platform in support of the Hartford Line, which will run between New Haven and Springfield, is currently under construction. The Hartford Line is expected to attract more than 600,000 annual passengers and is slated to begin service in May 2018.
Real Estate Development
Due to its rapid economic growth and the city's 2 percent residential vacancy rate (one of the lowest in the country), New Haven’s rental market is undeniably hot. Our office actively facilitates real estate development in the city. Since late 2015, 863 new units have already entered the market. Our office is working with developers who have 950 units approved or under construction and 1300 more units in planning stages. Click here for a detailed description of our project pipeline.