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Empire State Development Blog

Find the latest news on economic development in New York State

We feature stories of innovative businesses that are making New York their home, plus offer updates on economic activity and development from around the state.

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Public Notice

Tuesday, January 14, 2020 - 2:00pm
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Press Release

Tuesday, January 14, 2020 - 1:55pm
Sustainable Technology Company Will Set Up Commercial Scale Lithium-ion Battery Resource Recovery Plant at Eastman Business Park; Will Create a Minimum of  23 New Jobs NYS Investment Complements “Finger Lakes Forward” – The Region’s Comprehensive Strategy to Revitalize Communities and Grow the Economy Empire State Development (ESD) today announced that Li-Cycle Corporation, a North America based lithium-ion battery resource recovery company, will establish its first US-based facility in New York State. The company will set up operations at Eastman Business Park (EBP) in Monroe County in an effort to tap into the robust lithium-ion battery supply chain in the United States and the lithium-ion battery ecosystem in Rochester.  Li-Cycle selected EBP for this facility after determining it as the best location for the company to provide services to its growing client base to the South and Midwest. The company has also committed to creating a minimum of 23 jobs in its first year of operation. Li-Cycle expects to be fully operational at the facility later this year. Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and President & CEO-designate Eric Gertler said, “We are proud to reinforce our commitment to sustainable energy by investing in Li-Cycle’s lithium-ion battery recycling facility at Eastman Business Park, one of many forward-thinking projects that are further establishing New York State as a world leader in the sustainable technology industry and creating high-quality jobs in the Finger Lakes and beyond.” ESD is assisting Li-Cycle with up to $450,000 through the Excelsior Jobs Program in exchange for job creation commitments. Monroe County and Greater Rochester Enterprise are also assisting with the project. The total project cost has been placed at up to $23.3 million over a three-year period. Founded in 2016 in Ontario, Canada, Li-Cycle was awarded a grant through Sustainable Development Technology Canada to construct a demonstration facility.  With that facility fully operational, the company is now ready to undertake the first phase of its commercialization process at EBP. The company will initially occupy 57,000 square feet of a preexisting process building and is considering additional phases for the project in the coming years. Ajay Kochhar, CEO and Co-Founder of Li-Cycle said, “As the United States and world enter an unprecedented phase of growth for electric vehicles and electro-mobility, rechargeable lithium-ion batteries and the critical materials within them are crucial for the industry’s success. Li-Cycle is proud to be bringing our sustainable technologies and approaches to the EBP, as Li-Cycle’s first United States-based commercial facility. The facility will foster the development of closed loop lithium-ion battery resource recovery in the State of New York and the broader United States market. In turn, we are pleased to support the creation of high-quality jobs in the Finger Lakes region and look forward to our continued growth in the EBP.” Since its inception, Li-Cycle has developed and validated a unique process that allows them to recover  80 to 100% of all materials found in lithium-ion batteries while maintaining no wastewater discharge and actualizing the company’s zero waste philosophy.  All materials that are recovered from lithium-ion batteries are either processed to the point of being reusable in battery production, thus closing the loop, or sent for further processing to other recyclers (i.e., steel and plastics) to ensure all materials generated are being returned to the economy. The company is capable of processing all types of lithium-ion batteries used in electronic devices, e-mobility, electric vehicles and  energy storage. This project builds on the success story that is the rebirth of Eastman Business Park (EBP), where more than 6,000 people work at 114 companies now operating. Other sustainable Technology efforts at EBP aimed at growing the sustainable energy ecosystem include the BEST Test and Commercialization Center, the Kodak Cell Assembly Center and Plug Power. Other companies also thriving at EBP include DuPont, which recently opened the largest probiotics fermentation facility in the world, L3 Harris, LiDestri Food & Drink and Clearwater Organic Farms which will also open a state-of-the-art, commercial hydroponic greenhouse in the fall of 2020. State Senator Joe Robach said, "Every great business started with an idea and an opportunity. Li-Cycle’s idea to tap into the lithium-ion battery supply chain is a forward thinking concept and a great fit for Eastman Business Park. This is investment by Empire State Development will benefit our local workforce and economy, something we can all be excited to see. I look forward to seeing Li-Cycle Corporation grow and succeed in Rochester." State Assembly member Jamie Romeo said, “I’m incredibly proud to welcome Li-Cycle to Rochester as they begin their US operations.  Eastman Business Park offers unique and globally competitive infrastructure for lithium-ion battery operations, and this new business reflects our growing economic power on the national and international stage.  This is a critical contribution to the growth of the Eastman Business Park as a regional economic powerhouse.  We welcome Li-Cycle to the Rochester community and look forward to their growth and success in the years ahead.” State Assemblyman Peter Lawrence said, “Today’s announcement is another welcome example that businesses are choosing Monroe County as their base of operation due to our highly-skilled workforce and turn-key infrastructure and facilities. Eastman Business Park could not be a more suitable and appropriate location for Li-Cycle Corporation which is leading the way in the sustainable energy industry. The significant investment of almost a half-million dollars by the state signals that this is a project with enormous potential and it is my expectation that Li-Cycle will honor its commitment to creating jobs in the region and reinvesting in our community.” County Executive Adam Bello said, “The economy of the future will be grounded in innovation and sustainability, qualities embodied by Li-Cycle. I’m grateful for their partnership with ESD in bringing its first US based lithium-ion battery recycling center to Eastman Business Park.  This is just the latest development to reinforce Monroe County’s expanding role as a home to the emerging technology industry.” Greece Town Supervisor Bill Reilich said, “I’m happy to welcome another energy industry partner to Eastman Business Park in the Town of Greece. Li-Cycle’s innovative resource recovery technique is eco-friendly, safe, and represents a major advance in lithium battery recycling technology.  Li-Cycle’s arrival is yet another example of how EBP’s focus on the energy storage industry sector is a success not only for Greece but for the entire region.  Lithium ion battery use is increasing exponentially and Li-Cycle’s low impact recovery methods will safely deliver raw materials back into the manufacturing market, potentially supplying other energy storage industry partners right here in Eastman Business Park.  Like the food and beverage industry in EBP, the energy storage industry here is growing organically and we are excited to welcome this new partner and the growth they will inevitably bring.” Eastman Business Park President and Kodak CFO Dave Bullwinkle said, “We welcome Li-Cycle to the energy storage eco-system at Eastman Business Park.  Li-Cycle’s battery content recovery operations are the perfect complement to Kodak’s battery coating and cell assembly services and the Best Test & Commercialization Center run by DNV-GL. Li-Cycle joins energy storage tenants including Plug Power, Nohms Technologies, Energy Materials Corporation and Graphenix Development, Inc.  Li-Cycle operations will take advantage of the amazing utility and service infrastructure available at Eastman Business Park, reducing costs and speeding time to market.” Matt Hurlbutt, president and CEO, Greater Rochester Enterprise said, “We’re delighted Li-Cycle plans to establish its first US-based lithium-ion battery recycling center in Rochester, NY, close to its corporate headquarters as well as customers. Li-Cycle’s game-changing technology will be well supported by the unique infrastructure and battery and energy storage expertise available at Eastman Business Park here in Rochester, NY.” For additional information regarding Li-Cycle, please visit the company’s website here. 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 $8.07 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: Shari Voorhees-Vincent | [email protected] | (585) 399-7055 Press Office | [email protected] | (800) 260-7313
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Press Release

Monday, January 13, 2020 - 4:33pm
Research at New 1,000-Square-Foot Lab will Focus on Point-of-Care Disease Diagnostics, Virus Therapeutics, Synthetic Biology, and Emerging Contaminants Empire State Development (ESD) today announced the opening of a new Biological Sciences and Bioengineering Lab at New York Institute of Technology’s Long Island Campus in Old Westbury, Nassau County. The new interdisciplinary laboratory will bring together faculty and students from the university’s College of Arts & Sciences and College of Engineering & Computing Sciences to discover new pathways in point-of-care disease diagnostics, virus therapeutics, synthetic biology, and analysis of emerging contaminants such as PFAS and 1,4-dioxane. The project, which was supported by the Long Island Regional Economic Development Council (LIREDC), furthers Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s efforts to bolster Long Island’s innovation corridor and thriving biotech industry. Eric Gertler, Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and President & CEO-designate, said, “Long Island’s innovation corridor is booming — delivering top-notch research, jobs, and economic activity for the entire region. This new lab will further those efforts, while helping train the next generation of scientists who will drive Long Island’s biotech industry to new heights. New York State is proud to support this project, and we look forward to the new scientific advances researchers at New York Institute of Technology will discover.” Henry C. “Hank” Foley, Ph.D., New York Institute of Technology President, said, “Our region is primed to become a center for research and innovation in life sciences, which will lead to great jobs for New York Tech graduates and wonderful opportunities for us to partner with leading life sciences companies and top scientists.” The new 1,000-square-foot Biological Sciences and Bioengineering Laboratory is located in New York Institute of Technology’s Theobald Science Center on its Long Island Campus in Old Westbury. A “living lab,” the new facility will include space for faculty to both train students and pursue important interdisciplinary research that combines biology and engineering. The lab will feature high-tech equipment, including: A BioX 3D bioprinter, which can print complex biological components — including, most recently, a 3D-printed ear; A third generation DNA sequencer; A UV-Visible Spectrophotometer and X-ray fluorescence unit; and A BSL-2 Chamber, which enables scientists to research agents associated with human diseases. The $750,000 project to construct and outfit the lab was supported by a $150,000 ESD grant, recommended by the LIREDC. The project supports the Regional Council’s efforts to support Long Island’s growing biotechnology industry cluster, create a strong workforce development pipeline, and bolster interdisciplinary facilities that will incubate the discovery of new technologies. Kevin Law, LIREDC Co-Chair and Long Island Association President, said, “From the moon landing to sequencing DNA, Long Island has a strong history of shaping the future of technology. This new laboratory will further our efforts to create a research corridor on Long Island and help ensure that we remain at the forefront of scientific discovery today, while preparing our students to continue that work to solve the problems of tomorrow. I look forward to seeing what researchers at New York Institute of Technology discover in this new lab — and I am proud we could support this important project.” Stuart Rabinowitz, LIREDC Co-Chair and President of Hofstra University, said, "Long Island is home to some of the best research institutions in the world, and every day our region’s scientists are working on new treatments and technologies. This laboratory will bring an interdisciplinary team of researchers and high-tech resources together with students to further our understanding of the natural world and further develop our biotech talent pipeline — two goals the LIREDC is proud to support.” This new lab complements over $250 million New York State has invested in Long Island’s thriving biotech sector since 2011. These investments have advanced projects including an electron-ion collider at Brookhaven National Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s Center for Therapeutics Research, an electron microscope building at Brookhaven National Laboratory, and Stony Brook University’s Institute for Discovery and Innovation in Medicine & Engineering, among many others. Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said, “This lab places Nassau County on the forefront of solving some of the world’s most complex and critical challenges facing human health, while further solidifying Long Island’s place as the epicenter of a thriving innovation economy. I thank Governor Cuomo, ESD and NYIT on this literally life altering investment, which will spur further high-end research and investments in our communities by attracting, preparing and retaining the next generation of talented students, teachers and thinkers.” Senator Jim Gaughran said, "I am thrilled to welcome a new state-of-the-art biological sciences and bio-engineering lab to Long Island. This lab will contribute to the critical issue of emerging contaminants in our drinking water, among many other pressing concerns. I thank Governor Cuomo for his unwavering dedication to growing Long Island's biotech corridor and developing a stronger workforce, with an unprecedented commitment to advancing investment in science and technology in our region. These investments will undoubtedly lead to additional groundbreaking research and development to solve the pressing issues of our day." Assemblymember Edward Ra said, “The new Biological Sciences and Bioengineering Laboratory at NYIT is a win for Long Island. These are exactly the kinds of jobs we want to create. They’re tackling profoundly important problems — curing disease, protecting our environment and harnessing the power of synthetic biology to build a better world. I’m appreciative for the state’s investment, and I’m looking forward to supporting the lab and its important work.” About Empire State Development Empire State Development (ESD) is New York’s chief economic development agency. The mission of ESD is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits and other forms of financial assistance, ESD strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State. ESD is also the primary administrative agency overseeing Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Councils and the marketing of “I LOVE NY,” the State’s iconic tourism brand. For more information on Regional Councils and Empire State Development, please visit and www.esd.ny.gov.   Contact: Jack Sterne | [email protected] | (212) 803-3764 ESD Press Office | [email protected] | (800) 260-7313
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Press Release

Monday, January 13, 2020 - 11:46am
Empire State Development (ESD) announced today that applications are now being accepted for the inaugural class of the Community-Based Real Estate Development Training Program, which teaches East Side building owners and community members how to plan for and implement a commercial real estate development project.  The program is designed to build a community of citizen developers on the East Side of Buffalo by empowering community members with the skills and knowledge to successfully complete a project. It is part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s $50 million East Side Corridor Economic Development Fund and funded in collaboration with private and philanthropic organizations who created a pooled $8 million East Side Collaborative Fund to support capacity building programs such as this.  Applications for the Community-Based Real Estate Development Training Program are due Feb. 21, 2020 and are available on the program website here. “The Community-Based Real Estate Development Training Program will ensure local input in improving the land and buildings along Buffalo’s East Side corridors, with additional support from ESD capital grants available to program graduates for their property renovation and reuse,” said Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and President & CEO-designate Eric Gertler.   “I am committed to ensuring that the East Side community benefits from the city’s economic resurgence,” said City of Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown.  “To that end, my Administration worked with Empire State Development to develop this great program that positions East Side property owners to participate in the growth of their community by making them developers.” The Community-Based Real Estate Development Training Program is designed to enable community members to develop their own properties, fostering entrepreneurial spirit and creativity and to better ensure that lands and buildings along the East Side corridors are improved in a manner driven by the East Side community. It will include the opportunity to apply for capital funding from ESD for those who complete the training program, that will support the renovation and reuse of their properties. The Community-Based Real Estate Development Training Program was developed through collaboration of the University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning, University at Buffalo Regional Institute, Local Initiatives Support Corporation, Empire State Development, and the City of Buffalo. “The Community-Based Real Estate Development Training Program empowers Buffalo’s East Side by situating expert knowledge in real estate development within the community,” said Dean Robert G. Shibley of UB’s School of Architecture and Planning, which has informed the effort through its real estate development degree program and research team at the UB Regional Institute.  “We’re committed to public access to our teaching and scholarship and are proud to be part of a powerful partnership with ESD, the City of Buffalo, LISC and O-H Community Partners.” Participants will be selected from a pool of applicants through a selection process which includes a written application and an in-person interview. Applicants will be reviewed based on their residency, ownership of commercial property (and its location), development experience, vision for commercial property development, entrepreneurship, and impact of the project. Program Details and Requirements Applicants accepted into the program will actively participate in 19-week course, including 18 weeks of classroom instruction and a graduation.  Classes will take place on Wednesday evenings with one required Saturday obligation.  They are scheduled to begin on April 22, 2020 and will take place at the Northland Workforce Training Center at 683 Northland Avenue in Buffalo. Students who successfully complete the training program will receive a Certificate of Completion and participate in a Completion Ceremony in August 2020. All candidates interested in participating in the 2020 Training Program must complete the application located on the program website here.  Application materials must be received no later than Friday, Feb. 21, 2020 at 5 p.m.  There is no cost to apply, however those accepted must pay a one-time non-refundable $250 registration fee. Other costs, including tuition and books, are covered through the East Side Collaborative Fund. Interviews for selected applicants will be scheduled March 9-13, 2020 and accepted applicants will be notified by March 20, 2020. The curriculum is designed to provide an overview of the commercial real estate development process in Buffalo, including pre-development, construction management, property management, and financing the project from private and public sources. A wide range of well-known, committed experts in the field will serve as instructors.  Classes will include personal experiences from commercial real estate developers in Buffalo as well as instruction by lecture. Please see the program website here for program information and answers to Frequently Asked Questions. Any additional questions regarding this Training Program should be directed to the Program Director at [email protected]  Governor Cuomo’s $50 million East Side Corridor Economic Development Fund compliments the Governor’s previously announced investments on the East Side of $10 million for the Neighborhood Stabilization Initiative and $5 million for the Buffalo Central Terminal, for a total of $65 million in investments since 2017. Contact: Pamm Lent | [email protected] | (716) 846-8309 Laura Magee | [email protected] | (716) 846-8239
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Public Notice

Thursday, January 9, 2020 - 2:00pm
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Public Notice

Wednesday, January 8, 2020 - 10:30am
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Press Release

Tuesday, January 7, 2020 - 4:50pm
New York City Leaders and Elected Officials Endorse Governor Cuomo's State of the State Proposal to Create a 21st Century Empire Station Complex in Manhattan Earlier today, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo unveiled the 30th proposal of his 2020 State of the State: creating the Empire Station Complex - a 21st century transit complex on Manhattan's West Side. During a speech at the Association for a Better New York, the Governor announced the plan to transform the existing Penn Station site, integrate the soon-to-be completed Moynihan Train Hall and acquire the block south of Penn Station to create an expanded, remodeled and interconnected train and subway complex. Thirty-two New York City leaders and elected officials have endorsed the Governor's proposal. U.S. Representative Gregory W. Meeks said, “Anyone who has stepped foot in Penn Station can tell you there is an urgent need to not only expand the station, but make it easier to connect between public transit options. The Governor’s proposal for the Empire Station Complex will spring New York’s infrastructure into the 21st century, and accommodate the hundreds of thousands of passengers who use the station daily. This transformation will be good for commuters, good for our economy, and good for New York.” U.S. Representative Carolyn B. Maloney said, “A city must invest in itself to stay strong, and the creation of the Empire Station Complex is a great example of the type of bold, innovative projects New York should pursue. This project would not only expand capacity at Penn Station by 40%, but also better commutes for more than half a million New Yorkers. As all New Yorkers know, Penn Station has needed upgrades and increased capacity for years, and I look forward to working with the State, City, and the community to fully develop this plan to better serve New Yorkers.” Read the full press release here.
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Public Notice

Tuesday, January 7, 2020 - 3:00pm
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Public Notice

Tuesday, January 7, 2020 - 11:00am
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