ISTP, 4901 Searle Parkway, Skokie, Il 60077

New Downtown Skokie TIF

As noted in the Winter 2020 edition of Skokie Biz, the newly formed Oakton – Niles Tax Increment Finance (TIF) District was approved by the Skokie Village Board and has the unanimous support from all taxing jurisdictions.  The 6.25 acre TIF District was formed to spur transformational development of Downtown Skokie and the region around ISTP.

Construction on multiple projects is expected to begin in spring 2020, including a new combined public/private parking garage, a new 143-room Homewood Suites by Hilton Hotel and Conference Center and continued improvement to 8030 Lamon Ave at ISTP to accommodate new/or growing life science companies and research facilities.    Additionally, construction is underway at The BLVD, located at 8025 Skokie Blvd.  The development will feature 40 two bedroom luxury rental units and 2,600 square feet of ground floor commercial/retail space.

The Winter 2020 edition of Skokie Biz also noted additional new developments in Skokie such as the opening of an Amazon distribution center, new restaurant openings and other activities.  Click here to read the entire edition of SKOKIEBIZ

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Durbin & Pritzker Visit ISTP

At a press conference, Governor Pritzker recognized the contributions of the ISTP tenant community, American Landmark Properties and Village of Skokie as well as local members of the State Legislature. Additionally, the Governor highlighted Rebuild Illinois — a program that helps out every part of our state’s economy, and is a sustainable program that’s going to be paying dividends for years to come.

Pritzker announced at ISTP “Illinois now has a new message for the world. Illinois is back and we are open for business. Together we can build a state that truly serves as a beacon for families and businesses and good paying jobs.”

Senator Durbin met with representatives from ISTP and Park tenants, Vetter, Exicure, NuMat Technologies and the Village of Skokie

Durbin noted “I enjoyed getting the chance to meet with business leaders at the Illinois Science + Technology Park and learn more about the innovative work they are doing. I’ve made it a priority in Congress to support and increase federal funding for scientific research, which will help support ISTP’s innovators and inventors.”

After providing Durbin a look into the wet lab space at Exicure, CEO David Giljohann said “A great visit with a champion of science!”

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Vetter’s Chicago Site Wins Award

Vetter, a globally operating Contract Development and Manufacturing Organization (CDMO), announced that its US clinical manufacturing facility located at the Illinois Science+Technology Park in Skokie has been named as one of “Chicago’s Best and Brightest Companies to Work For®”.

The award, sponsored by the National Association for Business Resources, recognizes only those companies that have distinguished themselves as having the most innovative and thoughtful human resources approach. An independent research firm evaluates each company’s entry based on key measures in various categories which include among others, Compensation; Benefits and Employee Solutions; Employee Enrichment; Work-Life Balance; Communication and Shared Vision; Diversity and Inclusion, and Community Initiatives.

“Vetter is thrilled to be recognized for our efforts, particularly since the key parameters for deciding award winners are those of critical importance to our employees,” said Dr. Susanne Lemaine, President Vetter Development Services USA Inc. “This recognition reflects our ongoing efforts to perform consistently at a high level for our customers and to be an attractive company to work for in Chicago.”

Jennifer Kluge, President and CEO, Best and Brightest Programs said “..these companies rise to the challenge through their cultural innovation by maximizing their workforce potential.” .

To read the entire release, click here.

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CycloPure – $1 million SBIR Grant

CycloPure, Inc., a leading innovator in water purification technologies and the developer of the DEXSORB™ line of adsorbents, announced that the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences has awarded the company a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II grant in the amount of $1,000,000. CycloPure will use the Phase II grant to continue development of its DEXSORB+ adsorbent for removal of PFAS from drinking water.

“We’re thrilled to continue working with the NIEHS Superfund Research Program,” said CycloPure Chief Executive Frank Cassou. “NIEHS has been a great partner; they care deeply about the issue of PFAS in domestic drinking water supplies. Funds from this award come at a great time as we push to expand field activities with our environmental and municipal partners. We do our best work removing nanoscale contaminants. The PFAS Superfund Program is in our sweet spot.”

Click for entire release.

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SKOKIEBIZ Highlights Skokie Advantages

Skokie ranked high in this measurement of key economic development factors:

In July 2018, the Village conducted its triennial Nat ional Cit izen Survey (NCS), to gauge resident opinions on Village programs, services and policies. This survey is administered by the National Research Center to 1,600 randomly-selected Skokie residences and includes questions related to the business environment in Skokie, as a place to work, overall economic health of the community, shopping opportunities (usually highly rated!), employment opportunities, Downtown Skokie, and the overall quality of business and service establishments in
the community.

Survey Results:

  • 98% purchased goods and services in Skokie more than once a month.
  • 92-94% rated the overall economic health of the Village as positive.
  • 92% would recommend living/working in Skokie to someone who asked.
  • 90-93% rated Village efforts to implement economic development initiatives to bring new businesses, create new jobs, and generate sales taxes as positive.
  • 87-91% visited Downtown Skokie businesses more than once a month.
  • 84% rated the overall quality of business and service establishments as positive.
  • 83% rated Skokie as a positive place to work.
Click here to read the entire edition of SKOKIEBIZ

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Vetter’s Skokie Facility Expansion nears Completion

Since beginning full operations in late 2011, Vetter’s US early-stage development site has been expanding to help meet growing customer demands.  A significant level of expansion activities are nearing completion at its US clinical manufacturing facility located at the Illinois Science & Technology Park. The ongoing growth of the facility will help satisfy existing and ever-increasing future customer requirements as well enable meet the complex needs of newer drug molecules like peptides or antibodies, many which need refrigeration or freezing. New offices with 45 work stations, conference rooms and an archive room are also included. To support the increase in customer projects, a permanent second work shift will be added in Visual Inspection over the next months. A second shift in Quality Oversight is also planned.

“This variety of activities is a further proof point of Vetter’s consistent strategic approach to stay ahead of the market by focusing on the important service needs of our customers during their drug development journey; promptness; flexibility; high yield of their valuable API and, of course high quality,” explains Dr. Claus Feussner, Senior Vice President of Vetter Development Service.  For more details, click here to access the entire press release. 

With the new additions, most of which are expected to be completed by April, the site will increase its storage space by an additional 3,100 sq. ft. The new storage includes a 2,500 sq. ft. freezer farm as well as a planned 600 sq. ft. walk-in refrigerator. In total, 6,800 sq. ft. of storage space will result. A second extension, now in the final planning stage, will include an additional 1,500 sq. ft. of room temperature and freezer space. “When completed, the facility will have more than double the overall storage space we have currently available. This extensive expansion of freezer and refrigeration storage space represents the ongoing evolution in our Chicago business,” summarizes Dr. Susanne Lemaine, Vice President Vetter Development Service Chicago.

For an overview of the history of Vetter, click here. 

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Life Sciences Industry Growth

As noted in a recent CBRE report, the U.S. life sciences industry is growing at the fastest pace since 2000. The 3.2% year-over-year growth rate in U.S. life sciences employment ending Q3 2018 is a strong acceleration from the slow,but temporary, growth in early 2017 and well-above the 1.7% increase in total U.S. nonfarm employment over the same period. Employment in the industry has grown 42% over the past 20 years. All sectors of life sciences (Manufacturing, Testing Labs, R&D) are growing, but R&D continues to outperform.  The key subsector that is driving growth, even within the larger R&D sector, is research & development in biotechnology. This subsector grew at an annual pace of 6.2% in Q3 2018, far greater than other sectors of life sciences. Biotech R&D has grown 88% over the past 20 years.

An abundance of capital allocated to the life sciences industry is helping fuel strong growth. The $15.8 billion in annual life sciences venture capital funding through Q3 2018 was an 86% increase from the prior year. Though most of that funding was diverted to companies in Massachusetts and California, early indications show the share allocated to these states has waned over the past few years as investors seek greater opportunities elsewhere. Among segments of the life sciences industry attracting the most capital, about half of all funding is being allocated to biotechnology pursuits, clearly helping drive that subsector’s astonishing growth.  Click here to access the entire report

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Research Collaboration Challenges

Research collaboration between pharmaceutical companies and academic institutions are replete with challenges.  These challenges are:

  • Resource constraints, the most frequently mentioned category, refers to the limited availability of human, monetary and organizational resources
  • Legal and administrative process complexity includes challenges due to ‘paperwork’, internal approval processes, ethical reviews, and contract negotiations
  • Coordination challenges relate to difficulties in teamwork, the frequency and quality of communication, the coordination of tasks and the exchange of goods and knowledge
  • Scientific challenges arise from negative results, issues with the scientific methodology and difficulties in interpreting data
  • Goal alignment challenges, relates to diverging expectations and goals among project members and insufficient priority of the project in the partnering organizations
  • Interpersonal challenges include issues related to differences in project members’ individual attitudes, behaviours and interests, a lack of trust in the partner, a lack of commitment by single project members and interpersonal conflict
  • Technological challenges arise from scarce knowledge on new technologies and methods, uncertainty in the technical feasibility of methods and unreliable experimental techniques.
To learn more about these challenges, click here

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Chicago Life Science Opportunities

Long a hotbed of life sciences titans like Abbott Laboratories, Baxter International and Takeda Pharmaceuticals that have established the northern suburbs as a biotechnology hub, the Chicago area has recently seen a rush of startups as schools including Northwestern and U of C have pushed to commercialize faculty research in ways championed by universities like Stanford and MIT.
The biomedical and biotech sectors accounted for 44 percent of the $877 million in funding raised by all 942 startups spun out from Illinois universities between 2013 and 2017, according to data from the Illinois Science & Technology Coalition, a nonprofit advocacy group.
But the number of local facilities available for clinical tests and that also offer the equipment startups need hasn’t grown as quickly. One reason lab space isn’t pervasive is that it is expensive and risky to build. Structures like these need special ventilation, electrical and safety systems to accommodate chemical reactions, and extra security to protect highly valuable intellectual property.
The fully occupied ISTP in Skokie, on the site of the former research complex for pharmaceutical giant G.D. Searle, today houses several life sciences companies that originated at Northwestern. Read more in this article from Crain’s

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Increased Vitality to Downtown Skokie

The Village of Skokie welcomes a variety of new mixed-use residential and commercial investments in Downtown Skokie and surrounding areas. The $65 million, 8000 North development, broke ground in May. A mixed use development project by Neri and Nea Maya Developments at 8122 & 8110 Lincoln Ave has been approved. Varda & Company, LLC is investing over $4 million in 7 new townhomes at 8326 Elmwood Place. The Northfield Group, Ltd is constructing a $12 million mixed use project at 8017-8025 Skokie Blvd. For information on these developments and more, click here to access the Fall 2018 copy of SkokieBiz.

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