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Governor Hochul Celebrates Official Grand Opening Of Transformational City Center Building In Downtown Syracuse

$40 Million Mixed-Use Development Project Upgrades Historic Former Sibley’s Department Store Building on South Salina and West Jefferson

Investment Complements “CNY Rising” – The Region’s Comprehensive Strategy to Revitalize Communities and Grow the Economy

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the official grand opening of the City Center Building in downtown Syracuse. The historic location, originally home to Keith’s Theatre in 1920 followed by Sibley’s Department Store, has now been transformed into a $40 million, mixed-use facility that serves as a focal point for efforts to revitalize the downtown area. Upgrades to the former department store build on the current transformation underway in downtown Syracuse, made possible thanks to significant state funding including investments by the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council, the Downtown Revitalization Initiative, and capital funding, tax incentives, and other benefits provided by Empire State Development. New York State, through Empire State Development, is providing a total of up to $4.1 million to support this project.

"The new City Center Building marks the start of a new, exciting, and prosperous chapter in downtown Syracuse,” Governor Hochul said. “By investing in vibrant community anchors like City Center, welcoming new businesses to the area, and leveraging our local partnerships, my administration is committed to revitalizing community districts in Central New York and all across our state.”

The four-story facility includes 240,000 square-feet of commercial space and an attached 750-car parking garage. Among the companies operational at the new facility are project developer and construction manager The Hayner Hoyt Corporation; all-domain defense and technologies partner Huntington Ingalls Industries; green IT technology company CXtec/TERACAI; and Tompkins Community Bank. The renowned Redhouse Arts Center, a partial building owner, is also located on-site.

The renovation of the City Center Building follows several major investments to revitalize Syracuse’s central commercial district, building on priorities set by Governor Hochul and the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council. Those efforts include the revitalization of the historic Hotel Syracuse, now known as the Marriott Syracuse Downtown; the expansion of The Tech Garden, which is helping forward-thinking entrepreneurs to grow their ideas; the creation of the  Salt City Market; the renovation of the former Excellus building into the Icon Tower multi-use facility; the redevelopment of the former Post-Standard building; and the establishment of JMA Wireless’s global headquarters on Cortland Avenue among other projects.

Additionally, in 2021, the city of Syracuse was named as a round five, $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative winner. That effort serves as a cornerstone of the state's economic development policy, meant to transform downtown neighborhoods into vibrant centers of activity that offer a high quality of life and attract redevelopment, businesses, jobs, and economic and housing diversity. More information about City Center is available here.

Empire State Development President, CEO, and Commissioner Hope Knight said, "City Center is one of many transformational projects that are bringing new life to storied buildings in the heart of Syracuse. Through the support of DRI and other targeted investments, we are helping to create a more vibrant and connected downtown, and a brighter future for this incredible region." 

Read the full press release here.