Last June, we published Growth by Design, our latest in a long line of studies highlighting specific opportunities to grow and diversify New York City's economy. This report detailed the growing importance of the design sector to the city's economy, providing the first comprehensive look at the cumulative economic impact of fields ranging from architecture and graphic design to industrial design, interior design and fashion design. It showed that New York has nearly twice as many designers as Los Angeles, the nation's second largest design hub, and pointed out that design sector jobs in the New York metro area grew by 75 percent over the past decade. We also concluded that the city could be doing a lot more to support the sector's future growth.
Today, Council Speaker Christine Quinn ran with the ideas in our report in a big way, announcing a major new city initiative to support the growth of the city's design sector. She gave an especially big boost to one of our recommendations: to "establish a high-profile design festival to promote NYC's designers."
Speaker Quinn said: "We have more designers than any city in the United States, with nearly 40,000 New Yorkers working in everything from graphics to movie sets, architecture to interior decorating. We'll grow our design sector by stealing an idea from the fashion industry. Fashion Week, which starts today, brings 300,000 visitors and nearly $800 million into our city every year. Working with Council Member Karen Koslowitz, we're going to give that same kind of boost to our design industry by creating and hosting a New York City Design Week."