News Release


La Jolla, CA, January 31, 2005— The Scripps Research Institute is committed to a vision for Scripps Florida as a catalyst for Florida's biomedical industry, rivaling its own history and experience in California.   
Scripps Research is well known in California for helping foster the so-called economic clustering effect that has led to nearly 500 biomedical / pharmaceutical companies locating in the San Diego region, most within a three-mile radius of the institute.   Scripps Research expects that experience will be replicated in Florida once its permanent facility is built.   
Scripps Research's vision for Scripps Florida mirrors that of the Governor and the Florida Legislature.    Mecca, the permanent site under contract with Palm Beach County for Scripps Florida, provides the opportunity for that vision to become reality.   Scripps Research remains committed to the Mecca site as the home for Scripps Florida.
Scripps Research fully expects the entire state will benefit from the economic impact of Scripps Florida, beyond the boundaries of the Mecca site under contract with the County and beyond Palm Beach County.  Dr. Lerner's recent comments to the Palm Beach Post were intended only to share that statewide vision and caution against limiting economic development to any one designated site.  Scripps Research's experience is that the biotech companies will cluster where they are welcome and feel comfortable, just as the scientists who work there will live where they feel most welcome and comfortable.    The scientists who come to Scripps Florida and other emerging biotech companies will work and live close to Scripps in Palm Beach, and throughout the South Florida area, adding to the diversity and wealth of culture and economy throughout the state. 
Scripps Research has embraced the opportunity afforded to it by the State of Florida, and is excited about its role in replicating the successful experience in California in Florida.  Building on Mecca will bring that vision closer to reality.  If the County determines it cannot proceed on Mecca, any alternative site offered must provide the same opportunities for economic development as originally envisioned by the Governor and the Florida Legislature.  There can be no compromising of this vision.
As Dr. Lerner reiterated:  The vision for Scripps Florida should not be limited or measured by the geographic boundaries of a 100-acre site.  I fully expect that Palm Beach County, the South Florida region, and the entire State of Florida will realize significant benefits, recognition and positive economic growth from the permanent Scripps Florida institute.  Indeed, it is my vision that the focus of the world will be directed to Florida as the emerging leader in biotechnology and life sciences.


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