June 7 2019

Economic Development Month in Review: May 2019

For the Top Economic Development News of the Month, CEG selects news articles about projects or developments that promise to improve and/or transform the Capital Region’s economy, particularly those that related to manufacturing and initiatives outlined in, Capital 20.20, a five-year, multi-pronged plan for bringing economic prosperity to the entire region.

To learn about more the Capital Region’s economic development news from the past month, see CEG’s Economic Development Week in Review posts:

Albany airport welcomes return of American’s maintenance base

“A large hangar originally built for Eclipse Aviation’s new jet is the new Northeast maintenance base for a fleet of 50-passenger Embraer regional jets. Airport and elected officials gathered Wednesday to welcome Piedmont Airlines, a unit of the American Airlines Group, to Albany International Airport.

Airport CEO John O’Donnell described the ceremony as a reunion, pointing out that American had a maintenance base at the airport until 2003, when it was moved elsewhere.”

Philips’ Latham expansion to add 94 jobs

“Philips Medical Systems MR plans a $13.2 million expansion at its Latham manufacturing facility that will add 94 jobs to the more than 400 people already employed at the site.

The expansion was announced Thursday morning by Empire State Development, which is providing $1 million in Excelsior Jobs Program tax credits over a five-year period, based on Philips’ commitment to keep more than 400 jobs at the plant and create 94 new jobs.”

The Port of Albany just shipped a GE generator weighing almost a million pounds — a big lift for the port’s future

“General Electric shipped a record 944,000-pound generator from its Schenectady factory through the Port of Albany this weekend, a move officials say cements the port’s stature as the premier destination for heavy-lift cargo in the Northeast.

“This is the beginning of the future that everybody here has been working toward,” said port general manager Rich Hendrick.”

Manufacturer and retail distributor zero in on Luther Forest tech campus site

“The Luther Forest Technology Campus in Saratoga County is on the short list to become home to a 400,000-square-foot manufacturing plant that would employ at least 130 people.

InSite Real Estate of Oak Brook, Illinois, is negotiating to bring an international manufacturer related to the food industry to a 165-acre property near the GlobalFoundries computer chip complex in the Saratoga County towns of Malta and Stillwater, according to Dennis Brobston, president of the Saratoga Economic Development Corp.”

State approves $10 million grant for former convention center site in downtown Albany

“New York’s economic development agency this morning approved a $10.1 million grant for Capitalize Albany Corp. to buy land on the south side of downtown Albany where a convention center was originally planned.

The proposed funding from Empire State Development would be a huge step in the city’s efforts to convert land near the Trailways/Greyhound bus station into a large, mixed-use with development with apartments, offices and entertainment.”

Tierra Farm opening Latham distribution center

“Tierra Farm, the Valatie-based organic food company, has signed a lease on an 11,000-square-foot distribution center on Sicker Road, about two miles from Albany International Airport.

The new facility will handle the growing company’s East Coast distribution, and eight to 12 employees will staff the site. The company currently employs 60 people and will be hiring new employees to adjust to the expansion, though an exact number is not set, Tierra CEO Todd Kletter said.”

Charter plans national call center in Rotterdam

“Charter Communications wants to establish a major national call center at its regional headquarters building on Highbridge Road, bringing an additional 200 jobs to the facility.

Plans scheduled to come before the Rotterdam Planning Commission Tuesday night for initial site plan review call for interior renovations to the two-story, 80,000-square-foot building, greatly expanding an existing call center and using it to serve customers of Spectrum Mobile personal communications systems.”

Software startup that tracks student and corporate volunteering is expanding in Troy

“Passport for Good — a software platform that helps students, families and school districts track volunteer hours and extracurriculars — is expanding in downtown Troy.

The company is moving into designated tax-free space within the Quackenbush Building at 333 Broadway in Troy as part of the Start-Up New York program paired with Hudson Valley Community College. Passport for Good plans to invest more than $50,000 and create five jobs in the next few years. Those jobs include hires in its product team, onboarding and marketing.”

Mechanical Testing Inc. expanding with new office in Clifton Park

“Mechanical Testing Inc. is moving into a new office next month in Clifton Park that is much larger than its current space and will allow additional growth.

The company — which provides testing and balancing services for the heating, ventilating and air conditioning industries — purchased an office building at 4 Chelsea Place in Clifton Park under an LLC this month for $840,000. The office space is around 7,888 square feet, about three times larger than the company’s current office in Saratoga Springs.”  

Stratton VA has more than $30 million of projects in the pipeline, including building additions and new parking garage

“Albany Stratton VA Medical Center has several major projects in the works, worth tens of millions of dollars.

The hospital has been planning several of the projects for years, associate director Mary Ann Witt said.”

CDTA awards $4.3 million contract for new bus rapid transit route construction

“The Capital District Transportation Authority awarded a $4.3 million construction contract to Callanan Industries Inc. on Wednesday to build infrastructure for the new bus rapid transit line between Troy and Albany.

Callanan, the sole bidder for the work, will build pedestrian signals, expanded sidewalks and ADA-compliant curb ramps along the new route, known as the River Corridor. The base bid is worth $4.3 million, with a 20% contingency, for a maximum total of $5.2 million, according to CDTA’s May board meeting agenda.”

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