VALHALLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Some are calling it a bipartisan no-brainer.
Westchester County is set to take a major step forward with a plan to build a biotech campus, creating 8,000 jobs, CBS2’s Tony Aiello reported Thursday.
It sits just north of the Westchester Medical Center, wooded land known as the “North 60.” It is slated one day to be home to a billion-dollar complex focused on biotech and life sciences.
Supporters say it will mean 4,000 construction jobs and 8,000 permanent jobs.
“Oh it’s a game-changer, without question,” said Michael Welling of the Westchester Biotech Project.
WATCH: ‘North 60’ Project Update:
Welling runs the non-profit, which supports the county’s growing biotech sector.
Unlike the Amazon deal that Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio are pushing in New York City, this plan faces little-to-no opposition. County Executive George Latimer signed a deal approved unanimously by the county Legislature, leasing the North 60 to developer John Fareri.
The property is near the headquarters of Regeneron, a biotech firm valued at $45 billion.
Supporters say the North 60 complex will be a hub for life science firms, with a dramatic economic impact.
“When you’ve got companies that are here, when you have our kids who are going to college and coming back to work here in these types of industries that are going to be supported here, there’s no question this is a generational impact,” Welling said.
Latimer is a Democrat. On Thursday, before signing the lease for this land, he did something that seems a little unusual given the current political climate. He credited Republican Rob Astorino, who worked long and hard on the project before losing to Latimer in 2017.
“If you’re gonna build lines across the aisles you must credit people when they’ve done something right,” Latimer said.
The deal gives the county 6 percent of the gross lease revenue for office buildings. It is expected to add up to millions of dollars a year.
The Amazon deal in Queens is getting lots of incentives from the state. Biotech firms that locate at the new hub are also expected to pursue any incentive money that’s available.