New Shared Office Space Set to Open on Broad and Locust

Industrious, that is the name of a new shared office space set to open this May on the corner of Broad and Locust Streets in Philadelphia.

When completed, it will feature 37 private office spaces spanning the first and second floors of the building. Co-working seats are limited to 10 per office in order to preserve the space for those who have offices within the building.

Over half of the space is already occupied, with more than a dozen industries claiming space in the new building. Perks such as catered lunch once a month and daily refreshments are offered as part of the services from our region’s newest shared office space.  To learn more, contact Kristine Chin, Industrious Office Manager, at [email protected].

Philadelphia Residents View City in Positive Light

A recent study conducted by the Pew Charitable Trust found that 48 percent of Philadelphians believe that the city is headed in the right direction. With over 60 percent of residents noting that they plan to remain in Philadelphia 10 years from now, and another 67 percent stating the city will be a better place in five years, the overall image of Philadelphia is decidedly optimistic. The facts seem to confirm this belief with unemployment rates dropping three percent since 2010, an additional 8,800 jobs gained in 2014, and an all-time low homicide rate.

The full Pew Report can be seen here: http://www.pewtrusts.org/~/media/Assets/2015/03/2015-State-of-the-City_Web_FINAL.pdf?la=en

Delaware Ranked Number 1 in the Country for Internet Speed, Named Innovation Champion

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) named Delaware the number one state for fastest internet speed, as reported by the D.C.-based newspaper The Hill. The average rate in the state is 16.2 megabits per second. The company also named Delaware an “Innovation Champion.”

“We’re excited to provide our members and the public with a multi-dimensional look at what makes a state a great home for tech products and services, companies and startups,” said CEA’s Gary Shapiro in a Technical.ly Philly article.

The full Technical.ly Philly article can be read here: http://technical.ly/delaware/2015/04/15/fastest-internet-speed-innovation-champion-consumer-electronics-association/

Rowan University Hosts Southern New Jersey Development Council Natural Gas Infrastructure Investment Seminar

Rowan University hosted a seminar on Natural Gas Infrastructure, organized by the Development Council’s Energy and Environmental Committee, at the South Jersey Technology Park in Mullica Hill on March 25.

New Jersey is #3 in the United States for renewable energy, with over 35,000 solar installations and a mission to prevent air pollution. New Jersey also has thousands of miles of gas mains and intrastate transmission lines, meaning that safe and effective energy production is essential to providing energy efficient alternatives.

Other topics discussed include New Jersey’s natural gas supply and demand market and two natural gas transmission projects that will help meet the state’s needs. The first project is The Port Ambrose Deepwater Project, which was designed by Liberty Natural Gas LLC. It is an infrastructure project that will deliver natural gas to the New York and New Jersey market during times of high demand.  The second project involves a pipeline that will provide natural gas to Atlantic and Cape May counties.

“These supply and pipeline developments have the potential of transforming the traditional paths of supply sourcing into the region, creating a more diverse supply mix and a more varied delivery network,” said Tom Kiley, President & CEO of The Northeast Gas Association. “This bodes well for regional supply security and economic competitiveness.”

To learn more about the Southern New Jersey Development Council, visit http://www.snjdc.org/.

South Jersey Behavioral Health Innovation Collaborative Launched by Five Major Health Systems and New Jersey Hospital Association

Five major health systems in southern New Jersey, including Cooper University Health Care, Inspira Health Network, Kennedy Health, Lourdes Health System, and Virtua, the New Jersey Hospital Association, and the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers launched the South Jersey Behavioral Health Innovation Collaborative on April 15 at Virtua’s Barry D. Brown Health Education Center. Rich Miller, Virtua president and CEO, hosted the event in Voorhees, New Jersey. The goal of the collaboration was to provide an innovative way to improve the system while evaluating the current behavioral health system and also to provide engagement between patients, families, and providers in order to help mitigate the challenges they face.

The CEOs of the five hospitals, along with their teams, were in attendance to hear James Schuster, chief medical officer for the Community Care Behavioral Health Organization, talk about his groundbreaking project, “Optimizing Behavioral Health Incomes by Focusing on Outcomes that Matter Most for Adults with Serious Mental Illness.”

More information can be found here: http://www.njha.com/pressroom/2015-press-releases/apr-15-2015-south-jersey-hospitals-launch-collaborative-to-improve-access-to-behavioral-health-services/

Angel Capital Association to host 2016 Summit in Greater Philadelphia

The Angel Capital Association (ACA), the world’s leading group of accredited angel investors, will host their 2016 Summit from May 9 – 11 in Philadelphia at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

The 2016 Summit will bring more than 800 entrepreneurs from all over North America to connect with business and civic leaders in our 11-county region, and with each other to discuss investment opportunities and strategies.

In a recent PRNewswire article, ACA Executive Director Marianne Hudson noted, “Philadelphia will be a fantastic host city.” She went on to praise the city’s many assets, stating, “given the strong civic support and economic development engine that punctuates a stellar startup ecosystem of universities, incubators, accelerators and a thriving foundation of active angel investors, [Philadelphia will provide] excellent corporate connections and integration.”

This is the first time the ACA has selected Greater Philadelphia for their annual Summit, and it would not have been possible without the collaborative, active support from several leaders.  Special thanks to Mike DiPiano of New Spring Capital, Josh Kopelman of First Round Capital, Wayne Kimmel of SeventySix Capital, Ira Lubert of LLR Equity Partners, Richard Vague of Gabriel Investments, and Steve Zarrilli of Safeguard Scientifics for helping to make attract this Summit to our region.  Please join in recognizing RoseAnn Rosenthal of Ben Franklin Technology Partners and Katherine O’Neill of JumpStart NJ for bringing this opportunity to the forefront; to Jack Ferguson and the PHLCVB team for showcasing the Pennsylvania Convention Center so expertly; and to Bill Sasso of Stradley Ronan Stevens and Young and Pat Harker of the University of Delaware for hosting the meeting where this opportunity was introduced.

To learn more, visit the Angel Capital Association website here: http://www.angelcapitalassociation.org/

Penn Advances Plans for Innovation and Research Park With South Bank Master Plan

The University of Pennsylvania has released its plans for developing a research park on the 23-acre former DuPont property, located along the Schuylkill River in the Grays Ferry section of Philadelphia. The master plan for Penn’s South Bank envisions a new University asset devoted to advancing research and innovation, and the commercialization of research into new products, services and entrepreneurial ventures.

The South Bank plan, produced by Philadelphia-based planning firm WRT, is a critical aspect of the Penn Connects 2.0 campus development strategy, which has already added nearly 3 million square feet of space to Penn’s campus since 2006 while increasing open space on campus by 25 percent.

The plan is designed to support entrepreneurial growth as well as innovation for the technology-led economic development shift underway in Philadelphia. The South Bank master plan aligns with the already-released plans by the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation for the long-term revitalization of the entire Lower Schuylkill River into a 500-acre Innovation District that creates a stronger corridor of commercial activity anchored by Penn to the north and the Navy Yard to the South, with the Philadelphia International Airport and other transportation hubs located within the center.

The PIDC master planning, utilizing public/private partnerships, will expand riverfront green space, and connect Penn Park and the Schuylkill River Banks trail system with park land and trails east and south of the site. The South Bank’s strategic location has potential for creating a new keystone that secures University City, Center City and the lower river Innovation District as the three engines of Philadelphia’s economy.

The South Bank will be anchored by the Pennovation Center, a new business incubator and accelerator that will provide lab space and a hub for collaboration, creativity and the exchange of ideas for innovators from all disciplines. Such facilities are key components in the success of research parks as they combine the technically advanced facilities, expert workforce and researchers that a university can supply with the professional development and venture capital that entrepreneurs provide. South Bank has been attracting tenants to the space since 2010 through the adaptive use of existing buildings and some new construction, including such innovators as:

  • Penn Vet Working Dog Center—  the premier educational and research facility dedicated to harnessing the unique strengths of our canine partners for public safety and human health;
  • Penn Dental Research Greenhouse — conducting research on plants as shelf-stable incubators for medicine at a cost effective distribution method;
  • Penn School of Arts & Sciences Bio Garden — researching the impact of insects on plants;
  • Penn Transit Services — the fleet management operation of the University, including a new sustainable propane fueling station for the city;
  • KMEL Robotics — a spinoff of Penn’s GRASP lab in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciencethat has achieved recognition for its customized flying Quadrotor robots;
  • Novapeutics — established through Penn’s UPStart program, developing treatment for diabetes;
  • Jin+Ja — offices of locally produced health beverage company;
  • Edible Philly — local offices of a national publishing company focused on culinary arts;
  • The Philadelphia Free Library Operations Center.

While currently utilizing the existing building capacity of 200,000 square feet, the market analysis absorption planned for the next 20 years is estimated at 750,000 square feet with a long-term site development capacity envisioned up to 1.5 million square feet. Additional information about the South Bank is available at www.pennconnects.upenn.edu.

Amazon Hiring 800 Additional Employees at N.J. Fulfillment Center

In March, Amazon announced it is hiring 800 additional employees at its fulfillment center in Mercer County, New Jersey. Amazon, an online retail company, opened the facility last year and currently employs 1,500 people. The facility is 1.2 million square feet in Robbinsville Township.

Mercer County and Robbinsville Township officials partnered with the Greater Mercer Transportation Management Association to introduce the Z-line, a free shuttle service from the Hamilton Marketplace on Route 130 to the business park, as a way to get people from elsewhere in the county, particularly Trenton to jobs at the new facility.

10 Reasons Biking In Philadelphia Is On A Roll

The sound of ringing bicycle bells is constant in Philadelphia, where a grid layout, mostly flat terrain and 435 miles of bike lanes make it ideal for cyclists, whether they prefer mountain bikes, fixed-gears or classic cruisers. With the launch of Indego, the city’s first bike-share program, even more riders can explore Philadelphia’s great outdoors and fantastic attractions—from historic sites to beautiful riverside trails.

Indego, the city’s first bike-share program named for sponsor Independence Blue Cross, provides riders (ages 16+) can check out a bike—there will be 600 available—at one of the 60 Indego stations in the city, from the Delaware River to the east, 44th and Walnut streets to the west, the East Passyunk neighborhood to the south and Temple University to the north. Indego bikes are meant for quick trips of up to 60 minutes. Once the ride is over, the rider can return the bike to any Indego station. Bikers can pay for each ride individually, or Indego members can opt for one of two pricing plans. Built by Trek, the three-speed bikes feature step-through frames, front and rear lights, comfortable and adjustable seats and baskets—making these check-out-and-go bikes the ultimate in convenience for both residents and visitors in Philadelphia. For more information, check out www.visitphilly.com.

New Incentive Program Encourages Container Activity at Port of Philadelphia

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is now inviting shipping lines to participate in its new Intermodal Cargo Growth Incentive Program, which aims to increase cargo activity at the Port of Philadelphia.  The program will offer a per-container financial incentive to current ocean carriers utilizing the port.

The program offers a $25 per-container financial incentive to current ocean carriers utilizing the Port of Philadelphia, for any new containers moved beyond a carrier’s previously-reported container levels.  It is hoped that carriers will be encouraged to try the Port of Philadelphia as a result of the incentive.  The program was established through PennDOT’s Multimodal Transportation Fund, following consultation between PennDOT, Philadelphia Regional Port Authority (PRPA) officials, and other Philadelphia-area maritime businesses.

By encouraging companies to move more cargo through the Port of Philadelphia, PennDOT expects that this new program will attract at least 200,000 new annual container moves to the Port over the course of five years.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Multimodal Transportation Fund, established by Commonwealth Act 89, includes dedicated budget categories for aviation, rail freight, ports, and other transportation-related projects. Rules and further details on the program are available from PRPA’s Marketing Department and from PennDOT at www.dot.state.pa.us.