BioCryst Southern Surge: The Hoover City Council rolled out the welcome mat for BioCryst Pharmaceuticals, granting $1.8 million in tax breaks for their $22 million expansion venture in Riverchase. The biotech company plans to enlarge its Discovery Center of Excellence, adding 20,000 square feet to its lab space. This expansion will not only increase the company’s footprint to 49,000 square feet but will also bring about 70 PhD-level jobs in the next two years, with an average salary of $172,000, injecting over $11.5 million annually into the local economy.
In return for these tax breaks, BioCryst will contribute to Hoover City Schools through increased property taxes, approximately $97,000 per year over the next decade. The construction-related sales and use tax relief is part of the package, while building permit fees are expected to generate an additional $252,000 in revenue for the city. Greg Knighton, Hoover’s economic development manager, hailed the project as a “home-run,” aligning perfectly with Hoover’s targeted growth sector—life science.
BioCryst Pharmaceuticals, founded in Birmingham in 1986, has its roots deeply embedded in Alabama. Despite having headquarters split between Durham, North Carolina, and Dublin, Ireland, the company’s research and development hub remains steadfast in Hoover. The city’s support has been crucial in BioCryst’s mission to expedite discoveries and deliver life-changing therapies globally.
Beyond BioCryst’s success, the Hoover City Council is on a mission to bolster innovation. They recently secured a $200,000 grant from Innovate Alabama Network to explore the feasibility of establishing a health technology district in Riverchase Corporate Park. This initiative aims to build on the success of companies like BioCryst and attract more health care and biotech businesses to the region. The study will focus on strategic planning, regional collaboration, and potential connectivity to natural assets like the Cahaba River.
The Innovate Alabama Network sees this as a significant step in fostering an entrepreneurial and innovative environment statewide. Hoover, recognized as one of the 11 communities in the network, is set to leverage this support to catalyze entrepreneurship, both in rural and urban communities.
In other notable actions, the Hoover City Council greenlit additional funding for a stormwater drainage improvement project, approved community service agreements with several nonprofits, and accepted grants to enhance the city’s infrastructure and festive decorations. The council’s commitment to supporting businesses, fostering innovation, and improving the community’s overall well-being is evident in its proactive decisions.
This article encapsulates Hoover’s dedication to economic growth, innovation, and community welfare, showcasing the city as a thriving hub for biotech advancements and entrepreneurial endeavors.