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Photo via oldcitydistrict.org
Photo via oldcitydistrict.org

University City Keystone Innovation Zone Expands to Old City

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and the Philadelphia Department of Commerce, alongside The University City Keystone Innovation Zone, announced earlier today that…

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Hidden in the jungle

May 26th, 2022

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Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and the Philadelphia Department of Commerce, alongside the University City Keystone Innovation Zone (UC KIZ), announced today that the UC KIZ has received approval from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) to expand its existing boundaries to include the growing tech community in Old City, including the area along N. 3rd Street, otherwise known as “N3rd Street”.

As a result of the expansion, companies in Philadelphia’s growing innovation ecosystem will be able to access up to $100,000 annually in sellable tax credits. The DCED could award as much as $1.2 million in tax credits to newly eligible companies within the expanded zone in 2017. 

Many KIZ tax credit awardees invest those funds in new employees, while others purchase equipment to further develop and commercialize products and technologies.

“The expansion of the UC KIZ is an incredibly important development for Philadelphia's startup community," Kenney said in a press release.  "The inclusion of Old City will bolster the already exciting growth of tech companies we've seen on and around N3rd St. We’re committed to helping Philadelphia’s innovation community flourish throughout the City, and tools like KIZ are a big part of that equation.” 

Pennsylvania’s Keystone Innovation Zone Tax Credit is a component of the KIZ program. Up to $25 million in credits are available each year to eligible companies. Companies without tax liabilities can sell their tax credits themselves or secure a third-party, independent broker to sell the credits on their behalf. 

There are 21 startup companies in the UC KIZ that have received a collective $1.8 million in tax credits awarded by the DCED in 2015, as part of the KIZ Tax Credit Program. Over the last 10 years, 48 UC KIZ companies have benefited from almost $8 million in KIZ Tax Credits.

“Innovation and entrepreneurship are thriving all across Philadelphia, from University City and City Square all the way to N3rd Street,” Stephen S. Tang, Ph.D., MBA, President & CEO of the University City Science Center, said. “Thanks to this expansion, the UC KIZ will be better equipped to accommodate and support the cluster of tech startups in Old City while helping to attract and retain even more early-stage companies in Philadelphia.” 

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