Economic development council names 18 priority projects - The Buffalo News

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Economic development council names 18 priority projects

The Western New York Regional Economic Development Council has endorsed a list of 18 “priority projects” for which it will seeking funding from the state.

The proposed projects are seeking $25 million in state investment, among nearly $148 million in total investment. The funding awards are expected to be announced by year’s end, said Laura Magee, an Empire State Development spokeswoman.

This is the fourth round of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Council process, in which 10 different regions of the state identify their respective economic development priorities and request funding for them.

The Western New York REDC said Cuomo has directed up to $750 million in state resources to be made available this year to support all 10 regions’ priorities, including $220 million in competitive funds from Empire State Development.

Western New York’s list covers a five-county area, and was submitted ahead of Friday’s deadline for the latest round. The council is seeking financial support for the following projects:

The NFTA’s light rail vehicle rebuild; redevelopment of the former Gates Circle Hospital hospital complex; consolidation of the North Chautauqua County regional water supply system; cars sharing Main Street on the 400 block in the City of Buffalo; and addition of 9 miles of fiber optic cable from Little Valley to Salamanca.

Also: acquisition and redevelopment of 180 acres of former Bethlehem Steel property in Lackawanna; the Scajaquada Creek Paddlesport Launch in Buffalo; Buffalo Urban League Center for Economic Advancement; Gerard Place Education and Community Center; Olean Business Incubation Center; and upgrades of Plumbers & Steamfitters Local 22’s training center.

Also: Flight of Five restoration in the City of Lockport; reopening of the Buffalo Museum of Science’s observatory; Explore & More at Canalside; a National Comedy Center in Jamestown; the Southern Tier Enterprise Development Organization’s manufacturing loan fund program; a Biorefinery Commercialization Center at Alfred State College; and two above-ground pedestrian bridges at the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.

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