From its founding in 2001, BioSTL has recognized that facilities, physical infrastructure, and innovation placemaking to accommodate and encourage startups are essential elements of a robust ecosystem. At first, this entailed the research, analysis, and consensus-building to establish priority “nodes" of innovation activity that today are known as the Cortex Innovation Community (in St. Louis’ urban midtown) and 39 North (a world class suburban concentration of agtech and plant science assets). BioSTL later established pioneering shared laboratories for biotech startups – BioGenerator Labs– now in their third and largest iteration. The St. Louis ecosystem now boasts a wide array of coworking and innovation spaces in urban and suburban settings, promoting collaboration and connectivity.

BioGenerator Labs

BioGenerator Labs’ 30,000 square-foot facility is located in the Cortex Innovation Community. It provides lab facilities, capital equipment and office space for promising startup companies. Access to the facility reduces costs for client companies, while offering the space and research equipment necessary to move innovation forward and drive a company to its next funding milestones.

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The vibrant, 200-acre Cortex Innovation Community is the Midwest’s premier innovation hub of bioscience and technology research, development and commercialization, integrated into St. Louis’ historic Central West End and Forest Park Southeast residential neighborhoods, surrounded by nationally-ranked universities and medical centers and abundant cultural and recreational assets. The area has been described as a little European, a little New York, and totally St. Louis.

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39 North

The highest concentration of plant science PhDs in the world – more than 1,000 – call St. Louis home. Building on St. Louis’ AgTech strengths, the 39 North Innovation District includes 600 acres surrounding the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, BRDG Park, Helix Incubator, Yield Lab, and Bayer. By connecting these regional assets and improving mobility, creating development opportunities and additional greenspace will enhance the region’s ability to grow, attract and retain companies and top talent.

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BioGenerator, the investment arm of BioSTL, together with the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership opened in 2018 a research lab space with a special emphasis on startup AgTech companies. BioGenerator@Helix provides lab and office space to encourage the formation of local startup companies pursuing commercial ventures in agtech, precision agriculture, plant sciences, agriculture, food, nutrition, fiber, and clean energy. Located at the Helix Center within the 39 North Innovation District, the labs help fulfill an essential component of company building.