Empire State Development Announces Expansion of Ithaca Community Childcare Center

November 4, 2019

Ithaca Community Childcare Center Will Expand Capacity and Services to Address Barriers to the Workforce for Parents by Providing after School and Part-Day Toddler and Pre-K Programming 

Investment Complements “Southern Tier Soaring” - The Region’s Comprehensive Strategy to Revitalize Communities and Grow the Economy

Empire State Development today announced the planned expansion of Ithaca Community Childcare Center located in Ithaca, NY in Tompkins County. Ithaca Community Childcare Center will expand capacity and services to address barriers to the workforce for parents by providing after school and part-day toddler and pre-k programming. This expansion will add classrooms, a gross motor space, relocate the front entrance and offices for better security and centralize operations to respond to the growing demand for quality and affordable childcare in the greater Ithaca area.

Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and CEO and President-Designate Eric Gertler said, “Many families across the state have limited access to affordable, quality childcare, especially in more rural areas where spots are limited or far from home and work, which creates a real challenge for working parents. This investment towards the expansion of the Ithaca Community Childcare Center makes economic sense and is a necessary component of supporting working families and growing the local economy.

Southern Tier Regional Economic Development Council Co-Chairs Harvey Stenger, President of Binghamton University and Judy McKinney-Cherry said, “Often one of the biggest challenges for families in the region is finding child care, and tackling this challenge is one of our biggest priorities. This investment in Ithaca Community Childcare Center is just the beginning of identifying and implementing long term solutions that help families access childcare in their community - allowing parents to work with peace of mind that their children will be in good hands.”

This $3.9 million project at Ithaca Community Childcare Center will add 7,375 square feet and renovate 2,436 square feet of existing space at their Warren Road location which will include four new classrooms and a gross motor skills room.  To assist with the expansion and renovation, the Southern Tier Regional Economic Development Council has awarded a Round VIII Empire State Development Capital Grant in the amount of $790,000. Construction is expected to be completed in early 2021.

Ithaca Community Childcare Center Executive Director, Sherri Koski said, "We are excited about the opportunity that this grant has provided us to better meet the needs in our community. Currently there is an inadequate amount of child care in our area. This scarcity has impact beyond families, significantly impacting employers, businesses and the region as a whole. This project is an important step in addressing the childcare issues that so many are facing today." 

Senator Tom O’Mara said, “The expansion of the Ithaca Community Childcare Center is a critical piece of an ongoing community and workforce development strategy that will help strengthen families, attract and expand local businesses, and create local jobs.  It’s an important project deserving of this significant state investment.”

“I couldn’t be happier at this significant investment of state funding that will expand services at the Ithaca Community Childcare Center,” Assemblymember Barbara Lipton said. “Access to quality and affordable childcare is a major issue for the constituents of my Assembly district, and I’m pleased that childcare services are now being recognized as a critical component of our workforce and economic development goals. I applaud everyone who was involved with making this project a reality and I want to offer my thanks to the Governor, as well, for his recognition of the need for childcare across New York State.”

Martha Robertson, Chair of the Tompkins County Legislature said, “For people across the skills and education spectrum, child care is one of the most serious barriers to employment in Tompkins County. Parents struggle to find and keep affordable, quality child care, and many simply decide not to work outside the home as a result. We’re delighted and grateful that Empire State Development is recognizing the urgency of this issue with this grant to the Ithaca Community Childcare Center, and we congratulate IC3 on this important milestone.”

Accelerating Southern Tier Soaring 

Today's announcement complements “Southern Tier Soaring,” the region’s comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested more than $6.2 billion in the region since 2012 to lay for groundwork for the plan – attracting a talented workforce, growing business and driving innovation. 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 Binghamton, Johnson City and Corning as a destination in which to grow and invest. Now, the region is accelerating Southern Tier Soaring 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 10,200 new jobs. More information is available here.

Contacts:
Kristin Devoe | [email protected] | (800) 260-7313
Shari Voorhees-Vincent | [email protected] | (585) 399-7055
ESD Press Office | [email protected] | (800) 260-7313