BRONX, NY (April 2022) — Joseph Simone of Simone Development Companies says that vertical cluster design will be one of his firm’s life-sciences development strategies in urban settings.

“Vertical cluster design is an ideal solution for the dense urban and suburban regions where our company operates,” said Joe Simone, President of Simone Development Companies. “Particularly in New York City, real estate developers interested in building life sciences labs and offices must design in very limited acreage, which means the only solution is building tall towers.”

Vertical cluster design is a concept promoted by architecture firms like the Boston- and New York City-based SGA, which has developed a 24-story, 750,000-square-foot tower for densely populated cities like San Francisco or London. The vertical prototype takes a horizontal life-sciences campus and stacks it in a tower format while maintaining essential collaboration spaces.

Towers employing vertical cluster design have steel superstructures with 33-foot structural bays and 15-foot, floor-to-floor heights to provide ceiling heights necessary for the mechanical needs of laboratories. Air handler needs, power requirements, gas storage, plumbing, and HVAC requirements also affect the design of the building.

Simone Development Companies’ proposed Hutchinson Metro Center South Campus is a suitable location for vertical cluster design towers. The 33-acre multi-use South Campus will eventually offer 1.9 million-square-feet of facilities for business and medical offices, education, research and development, retail and hospitality.

“We have watched the life-sciences and biotech boom with excitement about the possibilities for our new South Campus,” said Patricia Simone, Principal and President of Simone Management Group. “Our Bronx location is ideally situated a short walk from a major research hospital and next to a future commuter train station that will eventually offer the east Bronx a 20-minute ride to Grand Central Terminal in Manhattan.”

The South Campus site is adjacent to the 42-acre Hutchinson Metro Center North Campus, a successful urban redevelopment that includes 1250 Waters Place — a 280,000-square-foot Class A medical office building fully leased to Montefiore Medical Center’s ambulatory care center. The 11-story building includes 12 operating rooms and four procedure rooms and it was the first “bedless hospital” in the New York Metropolitan Region.