GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Breaking News

Latest Cape Ann News

December 21, 2011

Gloucester as biotech hub? State group sees city at forefront for future

Gloucester is ready for prime time, as far as the biotech experts are concerned.

The city is one of an elite group of locales across the state that has won designation as a platinum-level "BioReady community" from the Massachusetts Biotechnology Council, a private-enterprise advocate for the state's life sciences companies.

The top-tier citation has gone to only 20 cities and towns in recognition of efforts that would open doors for biotech research and manufacturing facilities via smoother municipals approvals.

"It's like becoming a green community," said Mayor Carolyn Kirk. "You have to meet certain standards."

Among those necessary to be a BioTech platinum winner are:

That the municipality's Board of Health has adopted the National Institutes of Health guidelines on rDNA activity as part of its regulations.

The municipality includes a building or buildings that are already permitted for biotech uses and have 20,000 square feet or more of available space for biotech uses.

The municipality has a "shovel-ready" pre-permitted land site with completed a Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act review and municipal water and sewer capacity to meet additional demand.

The municipality has sites or buildings pre-permitted for biotechnology laboratory or manufacturing use.

The municipality has existing buildings in which biotech laboratory or manufacturing activities are taking place.

"Because of the state's rich history in biotechnology, many of its cities and towns, with the support of state government, have increasingly adopted local policies that greatly ease the pathway for renovation or new construction of biotech laboratory and manufacturing facilities," said Sarah MacDonald of the state biotech council.

Examples include "expedited permitting policies, by-right zoning, supportive public infrastructure projects, pre-permitted biotech sites and planned area developments," she said.

Other designated "platinum" communities include Andover, North Andover, Beverly and New Bedford.

Correspondent Nancy Gaines is a veteran reporter and editor of national and Boston publications. She lives in Bay View.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Latest Cape Ann News

Pictures of the Week
Your news, your way
Comments Tracker
AP Video Network
House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways