October 31, 2018
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Announces Completion of $79.4 Million Modernization of Greater Rochester International Airport

TOP Governor Cuomo Announces Completion of $79.4...

Airport Offers New Passenger Amenities with Enhanced Accessibility, State-of-the-Art Security Monitoring, and a Picturesque Canopy and Passenger Drop Off Area


Investments Complement "Finger Lakes Forward" - The Region's Comprehensive Strategy to Revitalize Communities and Grow the Economy


View Before and After Photos Here


B-Roll Video of LED-Lit Canopy Available Here

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the completion of a $79.4 million project to modernize the Greater Rochester International Airport. Building upon New York State's record investments in revitalizing Upstate New York's economy, the airport's enhancements both inside and out will spur tourism and continue the region's forward progress.


"Modern transportation infrastructure is key to bringing new jobs and economic growth to the Finger Lakes region, and the new and improved Greater Rochester International Airport will do just that," Governor Cuomo said. "This project will transform the region by making the airport a gateway to the world and in the process boosttourism, create jobs and move the Finger Lakes Forward."


"As someone who grew up down the Thruway from Rochester, I know that the condition of an airport can either be a sorry reminder of better days gone, or a beautiful testament to a bright future," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "By transforming the formerly outdated Rochester airport, this new gleaming structure is now a spectacular welcome home for residents, and serves as a statement to visitors that the Finger Lakes region is truly moving forward."

Audio Photos

The Greater Rochester International Airport renovations were completed on time, just two years after the Governor first announced the project. The transformation included a wide-scale redesign of the airport's terminal building to feature new shopping and dining options for travelers, including a "Taste of Rochester" restaurant and enhanced accessibility and security measures.


The project includes a newly renovated façade and a state-of-the-art canopy that will help protect the roadway outside the terminal from snow and ice during the winter and provide protection for people waiting curbside. The canopy features sustainable solar panels that can provide energy, a full 40,000-gallon rainwater collection system for irrigation and landscaping during the summer months, 24-hour security and LED lighting at night.  


Additional exterior enhancements include a smartphone lot, completed in August 2017, allowing motorists to wait nearby until their awaited passengers arrive outside the terminal; new signage and landscaping at the entrance to the airport off I-390; and new LED light fixtures that line the airport's roadway.


As part of the project, Rochester is now the first airport in Upstate New York to install facial recognition and object left behind technology as part of the ongoing efforts to enhance the safety and security of employees and passengers. These cameras will assist the federal, state and local law enforcement, TSA and airport security in accomplishing their mission to provide for the safety and security of the Nation's transportation system. 


The Airport is also creating a new Passenger Information Network to reduce passenger anxiety. This network, called ROCview, is free for passengers to use on their mobile devices or mounted tablets in the center food court. ROCview offers passengers the capability to view any of the 21 departure gates in real-time, from anywhere in the terminal on their mobile device, without actually having to be at the gate.


A new digital information hub is available to aid passengers departing at either concourse, and state-of-the-art technology engineered by the Rochester Institute of Technology's National Technical Institute for the Deaf will help guide deaf or hard-of-hearing passengers using different colored visual cues known as "hearing loops." Other technological upgrades to the airport include Bluetooth connectivity for passengers to find flight and gate information on their smartphones and new USB charging stations.

Modern transportation infrastructure is key to bringing new jobs and economic growth to the Finger Lakes region, and the new and improved Greater Rochester International Airport will do just that.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

The airport has also partnered with one of Rochester's most popular tourist destinations, The Strong National Museum of Play, to create two play areas for children inside the terminal building.


As part of Governor Cuomo's Upstate Airport Economic Development and Revitalization competition, the Greater Rochester International Airport is just one of many upstate airports that are undergoing safety enhancements and improved operations for a better passenger experience. The Albany International Airport, Syracuse Hancock International Airport, Elmira Corning Regional Airport, Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport, and the Plattsburgh International Airport are all being funded through this initiative.


New York State Department of Transportation Acting Commissioner Paul A. Karas said, "Governor Cuomo's investment in the Greater Rochester International Airport, like other airports across upstate, will provide a safe and accessible hub for passengers near and far. The modernization of the airport is just one of many infrastructure projects we're seeing help move the Finger Lakes Forward and will benefit the region for decades to come."


Chair of the Senate Committee on Transportation Joseph E. Robach said, "As a major hub for travelers to and from our region, today's completion of this important modernization project ensures that the Greater Rochester International Airport will be a state of the art facility and will meet the needs of the modern-day traveler. This investment by New York State reinforces our goal of working towards securing a 21st Century transportation infrastructure and ensuring continued economic competiveness for Monroe County. I believe that it is critically important to invest in safety improvements and the modernization of operations for airports across New York State."


Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer said, "This multi-million-dollar infrastructure investment will help to support tourism and Rochester's regional economy. Now, the overall experience- for both Monroe County residents and tourists visiting our region- will be greatly enhanced at our Greater Rochester International Airport."


Chair of the Assembly Committee on Transportation David F. Gantt said, "The Governor's continued investment in Greater Rochester International Airport will help move Rochester forward, and enhance economic development and ease of travel throughout the region."


Assembly Majority Leader Joseph D. Morelle said, "Thanks to the unprecedented investment delivered by Governor Cuomo we are bringing Rochester's airport into the future and realizing the full potential of this vital transportation hub. These improvements will expand access to reliable and affordable air service and further enhance our region's ability to remain competitive in the global economy."

Governor Cuomo Announces Completion of $79.4 Million Modernization of Greater Rochester International Airport

Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo said, "We are proud to have worked with dozens of local contractors and hundreds of skilled workers to deliver a new state-of-the-art airport for our community that creates a better travel experience for our residents and visitors alike. From our streamlined security checkpoint to more concessions and dining options - and even interactive exhibits from The Strong Museum of Play - our new airport is ready to help attract more visitors, jobs, and investment to Monroe County for years to come. I thank Governor Cuomo and the State of New York for matching our local investment in this project and I am grateful to all of our public and private sector partners who helped get the job done."


City of Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren said, "I want to thank Governor Andrew Cuomo for making this critical investment in the Greater Rochester International Airport, which is one of our region's most important job creators," said Rochester Mayor Lovely A. Warren. "These renovations will greatly enhance our efforts to create more jobs, safer/more vibrant neighborhoods and better educational opportunities."


The $79.4 million project was supported with $39.8 million in state funding. The remaining funding for the project was supported with $39.2 million from Monroe County and the Monroe County Airport Authority, and $400,000 from the federal government.


Building off the success of Governor Cuomo's Upstate Airport Initiative project, in the spring of 2018, Monroe County opted to perform additional construction to the West Rotunda. Including a diner, and the East Rotunda, including a bar. The two rotundas connect the terminal to the concourses. Construction completion of these projects is expected in November.


The county has also opted to construct a small canopy section over a sidewalk that mirrors the look of the completed roadway canopy. This smaller canopy will cover passengers walking from the parking garage to the lower roadway Canopy. Completion of the canopy project is expected also in November.


In its 70th year of operation under Monroe County, the Greater Rochester International Airport supports nearly 10,000 jobs in the Finger Lakes region.  The Airport is served by seven major domestic carriers, including Air Canada, Allegiant Air, American Airlines, Delta, JetBlue, Southwest and United Airlines and handles approximately 115 flights per day and approximately 2.4 million passengers annually.   


Accelerating Finger Lakes Forward


Today's announcement complements "Finger Lakes Forward," the region's comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested more than $5.2 billion in the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan - investing in key industries including photonics, agriculture and food production, and advanced manufacturing. Today, unemployment is down to the lowest levels since before the Great Recession; personal and corporate income taxes are down; and businesses are choosing places like Rochester, Batavia and Canandaigua as a destination to grow and invest in.


Now, the region is accelerating Finger Lakes Forward with a $500 million State investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, announced by Governor Cuomo in December 2015. The State's $500 million investment will incentivize private business to invest well over $2.5 billion - and the region's plan, as submitted, projects up to 8,200 new jobs. More information is available here.

Contact the Governor's Press Office
Contact the Governor's Press Office