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Council to Hear Incentive for Revolutionary New Gene Therapy Company

New children-focused biotech company to invest $74 Million in capital improvements 

[COLUMBUS-OH] At the start of 2020, City Council outlined its vision for Columbus. The major tenets are building pathways out of poverty, creating good paying jobs and strengthening neighborhoods. On Monday, February 24, 2020, the Department of Development presented ordinance 0436-2020, an Enterprise Zone agreement with Andelyn Biosciences that will bring 170 net new full-time permanent positions and $74 million in new private investment to the City.

Council is scheduled to vote on the legislation during the Monday, March 2, 2020, meeting. 

"We have focused our work on helping residents build pathways out of poverty," said Columbus City Councilmember Emmanuel V. Remy. "In this case, 90 of the new jobs created require an associate's degree or less." 

Andelyn Biosciences, a new for-profit subsidiary of Nationwide Children's Hospital, Inc., is committed to saving the lives of children with untreatable genetic diseases through cutting-edge gene therapy developed here in Columbus. The goal is to create therapies to solve life-threatening conditions such as Spinal Muscular Atrophy, Cystic Fibrosis, Parkinson's disease and ALS. The facility will be the first of its kind in Central Ohio. 

"Not only does this project enhance economic opportunities, but it also invests real dollars into a vacant piece of property where this new company can be a leading voice in transforming the national gene therapy landscape," Councilmember Remy continued.

The Department of Development recommended a 15 year/100% Enterprise Zone Tax Abatement on the real property improvements for the 7.8+ acres of undeveloped land located near the southwest corner of Lane Avenue and Carmack Road. The land is currently owned by the State of Ohio and is exempt from property taxes. Following the abatement period, it will generate an estimated $2.5 million in new real estate taxes per year.

The new facility is expected to bring in an annual payroll of $15.4 million. The average salary starts at $69,000 and extends to $279,000 per year. During the term of the tax abatement, both the City of Columbus and Columbus City Schools are scheduled to receive more than $2.5 million in net new income tax revenues. 

"This project represents a major win for Columbus. It will be central Ohio's first commercial-scale Good Manufacturing Practices clinical manufacturing facility devoted to gene therapies," said Michael Stevens, Department of Development interim director. 

Columbus City Schools also negotiated with Nationwide Children's Hospital to provide a minimum of five additional clinicians to work during regular school hours in the fields of primary care or behavioral health valued at $330,000 annually. This is in addition to the $3.2 million in support services the hospital currently provides to the district, including primary care and mobile care units, school-based health centers and asthma programs.

"This is a unique opportunity to support an innovative new business and ensure Columbus can produce life-changing medical products," said Council President Shannon G. Hardin. "We are focused on building strong neighborhoods. This agreement brings millions in capital investment to a vacant lot, good paying jobs, and advanced medical research to our community."