First Batch of Approved Awards Include 97 Shovel- Ready Projects to Stimulate New York's Post-Pandemic Recovery
Full List of Awardees Thus Far Can be Found Here
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that over $81 million has been awarded to support 97 priority projects across New York State through the Regional Economic Development Council initiative. This year, $150 million in grant funds from Empire State Development was made available on a continuous and competitive basis to support the immediate needs of applicants. Additionally, projects within each region are eligible for a share of $75 million in Excelsior Jobs Program Tax Credits to help attract and grow business in their region.
"The pandemic toll touched every corner of the state and every sector of New York's economy, and as a result we must ensure that our recovery does the same," Governor Hochul said. "As we move forward from the pandemic we are using the rolling grant process to build New York State back better by supporting shovel-ready projects with the potential to accelerate new investments and catalyze economic growth in every community."
"Through a collaborative, bottom up, and regional approach to economic development, these projects were chosen for their innovation, impact on their communities and potential for positive change coming out of the pandemic," said Lieutenant Governor Benjamin. "Whether it is workforce development, tourism, green investments or domestic manufacturing, we are moving forward to foster a strong and prosperous economy in New York State."
The application for ESD Grant funds remains open, and applications are being reviewed on an on-going basis until funds are exhausted. Applicants with strong, shovel-ready projects that align with the state and region's economic development priorities can apply through the Consolidated Funding Application.
Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and President & CEO-designate Hope Knight said, "The COVID pandemic has had a devastating impact on our state, and this is especially true for the businesses and organizations that are the foundation of our economy. The Regional Economic Development Councils, made up of people who know their own communities best, have recommended innovative projects that will help their regions rebuild, and reemerge stronger and smarter for the future."
This initial round of priority projects was recommended by each Regional Council because of their project readiness and alignment with each region's strategic plan. Highlights include:
- Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (Capital Region) - $1.75 million ESD Grant: The Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in Albany County will invest nearly $9 million to renovate laboratory space for new Quality Assurance/Quality Control and Cell and Gene Therapy labs. The project will also perform necessary construction and renovation to install and support the operation of highly specialized biopharmaceutical laboratory equipment in The Stack Family Center for Biopharmaceutical Education and Training (CBET).This initiative will leverage partnerships with industry, academia and government agencies to deploy cutting edge biopharmaceutical manufacturing technology to support current and future workforce demands while promoting economic development, community outreach and engagement for students and practicing professionals.
- Fotokite Expansion (Central New York Region) - $2.5 million ESD Grant, $2.5 million Excelsior Jobs Program Tax Credit: Perspective Robotics US, LLC will be one of the largest and first tenants at the former Syracuse Development Center in Onondaga County which has been vacant since 1998, allowing the company to develop its global production center. The new site will contain state-of-the art manufacturing facilities as well as new lab and office space for the company. The company will invest over $21 million and create and retain over 200 jobs.
- Solar Home Factory (Finger Lakes Region) - $1 million ESD Grant, $1 million Excelsior Jobs Program Tax Credit: The Solar Home Factory will invest over $21 million and construct a new 108,000 sq. ft. facility in Geneva (Ontario County) to manufacture solar powered, modular, net-zero multi-family housing units. The modular units will be delivered to housing projects throughout Upstate New York and installed onsite. The company will create 107 new jobs.
- New York Institute of Technology Microscopy Center (Long Island Region) - $1.05 million ESD Grant: New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) College of Osteopathic Medicine, located in Old Westbury is creating a Microscopy Innovation Center to advance research and breakthrough treatments for neurodegenerative diseases, clinical depression, and more while training workers in diagnostic microscopy, visualization, and imaging technologies. NYIT will invest over $15 million into the Microscopy Innovation Center.
- Upriver Studios (Mid-Hudson Region) - $500,000 ESD Grant: Upriver Studios will create a carbon neutral campus and a more competitive series of sound stages for film and television production projects in a 101,000 sq ft. state-of-the-art facility in Saugerties. The project will allow Upriver to attract and retain major network productions like the one recently inked to a one-year renewable contract in May of this year, resulting in hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars in economic impact in the Mid-Hudson Valley.
- HPK Industries (Mohawk Valley Region) - $200,000 ESD Grant: HPK Industries will purchase new machinery and equipment to streamline operations and automate processes to more than double production capabilities for PPE at their facility in Herkimer County. This project will meet the growing demand as New York State and U.S. based companies seek to secure the supply chain of PPE products. HPK Industries will invest over $1 million in the facility and create and retain 60 jobs.
- Governors Island Climate Resiliency Accelerator (New York City Region) - $2.5 million ESD Grant: Historic Building 301 on Governors Island will be transformed into the $13.35 million Buttermilk Labs, an accelerator hub for climate change-focused businesses, entrepreneurs, and non-profits. The project will provide a platform for supporting and scaling green- and blue-tech businesses, such as offshore wind, and is a critical step in establishing a future Center for Climate Solutions on the Island. The project is expected to create 150 jobs employed by accelerator tenant companies.
- OWD Site Development (North Country) - $2.5 million ESD Grant: OWD Development, LLC will invest over $13 million to redevelop a blighted former manufacturing facility into a new mixed-use development site. This certified historic redevelopment project, located in Tupper Lake, Franklin County, will include co-working and training space, commercial space, and market rate apartments.
- United Health Services Improving Access to Childcare (Southern Tier) - $991,616 ESD Grant: United Health Services (UHS) will renovate an existing facility in Broome County, to provide an updated and compliant setting for childcare, creating additional high quality and convenient childcare slots for United Health Services employees and community members. UHS will invest almost $5 million and create 18 new jobs.
- Buffalo Studios (Western New York Region) - $2 million ESD Grant: Buffalo Studios will create a Hollywood-quality movie studio lot in South Buffalo, Erie County that will include facilities to support the film, television, and gaming industries. The project will allow for production of feature films and television series at the facility alongside post-production, animation, gaming, and industry tech development. In addition, Buffalo Studios will establish a partnership with the University at Buffalo to establish a satellite campus on site for education and training opportunities to university students and residents from Buffalo and Western New York. The project will also include the construction of an on-site childcare facility. This $80 million project will create 22 new jobs.
About the Consolidated Funding Application
The Consolidated Funding Application was created to streamline and expedite the grant application process. The CFA process marks a fundamental shift in the way state resources are allocated, ensuring less bureaucracy and greater efficiency to fulfill local economic development needs. The CFA serves as the single-entry point for access to economic development funding, ensuring applicants no longer have to slowly navigate multiple agencies and sources without any mechanism for coordination. Now, economic development projects use the CFA as a support mechanism to access multiple state funding sources through one application, making the process quicker, easier, and more productive. Learn more about the CFA here.
About the Regional Economic Development Councils
The Regional Economic Development Council initiative is a key component of the State's approach to State investment and economic development. In 2011, 10 Regional Councils were established to develop long-term strategic plans for economic growth for their regions. The Councils are public-private partnerships made up of local experts and stakeholders from business, academia, local government, and non-governmental organizations. The Regional Councils have redefined the way New York invests in jobs and economic growth by putting in place a community-based, bottom-up approach and establishing a competitive process for State resources. Learn more at regionalcouncils.ny.gov.