New Haven, now a small shoreline city of 125,000 people, is in the midst of significant growth and investment. Of relevance to BBS students, New Haven has become a biotechnology center for the Northeast. In the past few years, local biotech companies have secured several billion dollars in new investments, and new companies and more lab space continue to come on board. The city's exploding high-tech industry has captured the attention of Wall Street, the national press, urban planners, and even recent BBS graduates looking to enter the job market.
Concurrent with New Haven's burgeoning biotech sector are other major downtown enhancements. The four-star Omni New Haven Hotel at Yale sits one block from Yale College. The renovated Shubert Performing Arts Center stands across from the hotel, separated by a newly designed park. York Square, anchoring the west end of campus, is home to the gigantic Yale Barnes & Noble Bookstore, Urban Outfitters, J. Crew, specialty shops, ethnic restaurants, and gourmet coffeehouses, making the area a popular late-night stop for students. East of the campus, the city's entire Ninth Square has experienced a renaissance, with its ultramodern apartments and condominiums, upscale restaurants, and hip nightclubs supporting a vibrant community. The Wooster Square neighborhood attracts daily crowds to its restaurants and pastry shops as well as to its annual festivals. The East Rock neighborhood, in which most graduate students live, has numerous pubs, restaurants, gourmet grocers, and coffee shops that are always hopping.
Perhaps the most noticeable measure of the city’s energy and financial health is its reputation as a destination for great food. In fact, New Haven has more restaurants per capita than any other city in the world. Ok, we made that up, but the city is blessed with an incredible number of restaurants to suit all tastes and budgets. People travel to New Haven from many surrounding regions just to sample the city's fantastic assortment of food. Wooster Square, the city’s Little Italy, boasts not only the best pizza in New England (and is the birthplace of pizza!) but also offers some of the most elegant dining experiences in the region. The downtown area offers every imaginable cuisine: Indian, Thai, Chinese, Cuban, Japanese, Korean, Mexican, Middle Eastern, French, Greek, Malaysian, Spanish, Vietnamese, Eritrean and Ethiopian, Irish, and American. After-dinner drinks are available at dance clubs, brew pubs, and neighborhood and downtown bars. Almost all of the dining and drinking establishments are easily within walking distance of campus and/or home.
One last item worth mentioning is that New Haven has become a major destination for Hollywood productions. Stars such as Harrison Ford, Julia Roberts, Uma Thurman, Al Pacino, and Robert DeNiro have all filmed on location in the past few years.