Capital Region economic development grants: Tivoli Preserve, Albany Skyway, Nipper, Troy movie theater, craft beverages, and more

REDC awards announce 2016 Capital Region

Originally published Thursday at 2:20 pm. Updated Thursday at 4:05 pm.

The Capital Region got $83.1 million in the state's annual Regional Economic Development Council awards/game show on Thursday. That total made it a "top performer" -- and it was the second-highest total of any region.

The details on the specific projects getting funding in the Capital Region are below. There are also region-by-region totals for the awards.

The announcement included many of the same elements as previous years, including specious claims about the economic vitality of upstate and that weird "no, you're the best" dynamic between Maria Bartiromo and Andrew Cuomo. (Sadly, the state has still not installed a giant wheel on stage for representatives of each regional economic development council to spin and reveal their total.)

One bit of other news that came out of the presentation: Andrew Cuomo reiterated his support for allowing services such as Uber and Lyft to operate upstate.

His statement -- "I guess I support Uber upstate." -- followed a deadpan joke by Empire State Development head Howard Zemsky about requesting an Uber to take him to The Egg from the ESP office in Albany -- the car showed up 2 hours and 45 minutes later and took him to Price Chopper.

Capital Region projects awards that caught our eye

The full list of Capital Region project awards is in the next section. And a quick list of projects that caught our eye on the first scan is immediately below.

It's important to note that not every project that's awarded a grant ends up being completed.

Tivoli Lake Preserve Stream Daylighting - $2,100,000 (two grants)
Albany Water Board
"The Albany Water Board will daylight a portion of Patroon Creek within the Tivoli Park Preserve. This project will help mitigate erosion, stabilize critical infrastructure within the preserve and use natural resources to provide additional downstream flood protection."

This idea has been bubbling up over the last few years as the city has looked at restoring the Tivoli Preserve, which is in West Hill.

Albany Skyway Project - $375,000
Capitalize Albany Corporation
"Capitalize Albany Corporation will conduct planning and feasibility studies that will ultimately result in conversion of the northbound exit ramp from I-787 from Quay Street to Clinton Avenue to the region's first and only highline park. Upon conversion, the former ramp will serve as a promenade, bike route, and linear park making valuable connections, dramatically increasing accessibility to both downtown and waterfront."

impact downtown Albany linear park idea

This idea emerged as part of the Impact Downtown Albany "playbook" back in 2015. (The image above is from that doc.)

Construction of the City of Albany South End Bikeway / South End Multi- Use Design and Construction - $650,000 (two grants)
City of Albany
"The City of Albany will design and construct the South End Multi-Use Trail, located in
the South Waterfront District, that will link the Helderberg-Hudson Rail Trail and the Mohawk-Hudson Hike-Bike Trail, filling a gap in a more than 360-mile multi-use trail network. The proposed treatment is a two- way Separated Bike Lane, also known as a cycle track, extending along the east side of South Pearl Street where sidewalks exist." And: "The City of Albany will complete final design and construction of 1.5 miles of the South End Multi-Use Trail, a two-way cycle track linking the Helderberg-Hudson Rail Trail to the Mohawk-Hudson Hike-Bike Trail through the South Waterfront District."

You might remember there was a planning event for this project earlier this year, which discussed some of the possible options for the path. To our knowledge, there hasn't been a public announcement yet about which option was picked.

48 Hudson Avenue Restoration - $268,032
Historic Albany Foundation
"The restoration of 48 Hudson will have a great impact by contributing to the preservation of a highly significant historic property. The outcome will ensure that Dutch architectural features will not be lost."

48 Hudson is thought to be Albany's oldest building and HAF has been looking for funding to restore it since getting ownership of the building a few years back. Of course, this year there were also concerns about the building after its neighbor collapsed and was the subject of an emergency demolition.

CREDC priority projects 2016 Nipper Building cropped

Nipper Redevelopment - $500,000
Nipper Apartments, LLC
"Redevelopment of vacant properties to establish commercial and retail space, residential apartments and parking in downtown Albany's warehouse district."

This the mixed-use redevelopment of the Nipper Building.

Brown's Brewery Sustainable Development - $557,450 (two grants)
Brown's Brewing
"Brown's Brewing Company will renovate and expand its Hoosick Falls facility by investing in new equipment and RD to implement a full canning line, additional cold storage, lab space and expanded processing capabilities, establishing a craft brewing and agricultural destination." And: "Funds will be used to support a portion of the costs of constructing a new addition on the west side of the building to house an elevator shaft and elevator in order to create universal access to the basement, ground floor, and upper two floors."

Ingalls Avenue Shoreline Park - $454,006
City of Troy
"The City of Troy seeks to acquire land on President St. between Ingalls Avenue and Middleburgh Street in Troy upon which the City intends to ultimately construct a park with environmental and historic interpretive amenities to support the funded boat launch construction immediately adjacent to and north of this Park acquisition site. This park could become the Gateway entrance to the Erie canal."

American Theater - $600,000
Dauchy River Triangle, LLC
"Dauchy River Triangle will renovate the historic American Theater in Troy to establish a new movie theater and contribute to the revitalization of downtown Troy."

This is the old theater on River Street that Bonacio Construction wants to renovate and bring in Bow Tie as an operator.

155 River Street - $1,000,000
River King Development
"Renovation of a vacant historic building, infrastructure improvements and construction of a parking garage to create new commercial, restaurant and entertainment space, residential units and a boutique hotel in downtown Troy"

155 River is the building on the northwest corner of River Street and Congress Street.

Sustainable Agriculture Business Expansion - $3,000,000
Sustainable AquaFarms
"SAFE Holding Co. will expand its business in the Town of Berlin to produce hydroponic lettuces and caviar. The expansion includes the development of tank system, installation of ground source heat pumps, CHP generation, fish houses for black bass and sturgeon, and the construction of administrative buildings."

Construction of The Greenbelt Trail Downtown Connector - $1,134,333
City of Saratoga Springs
"The City of Saratoga will construct its Greenbelt Trail Downtown Connector, incorporating bicyclist, pedestrian, and transit improvements in an area starting at the corner of the Maple and Lake Avenue intersection extending to the eastern loop of Excelsior Avenue. Work will consist of preliminary and final engineering and construction."

Common Roots Brewing Expansion - $100,000
Common Roots Brewing Company
"Common Roots Brewing Company will expand and renovate its existing warehouse to accommodate a new canning line and grain storage, milling and conveyance systems to support continued growth and expansion into new markets."

Common Roots is in South Glens Falls.

CREDC priority projects 2016 The Mill Schenectady

The Mill - $2,325,000
Re4orm Architecture
"Re4orm Architecture will acquire and renovate properties in Schenectady to create The Mill Artisan District, a three-block area that will include New York maker space for a distillery, a craft brewery, retail establishments and apartments."

Not included
Notable in its omission: The Palace had requested more than $4 million for its planned expansion -- and it doesn't show up in this list.

Earlier on AOA: Scanning the Capital Region Econ. Development Council's new batch of priority projects

Capital Region project awards

REDC Awards Booklet 2016 Capital Region by alloveralbany on Scribd

Regional award totals

Western New York: $62 million

Finger Lakes: $80.5 million (top performer)

Southern Tier: $60.4 million

Central New York: $62.2 million

Mohawk Valley: $81.9 million (top performer)

North Country: $61.4 million

Capital Region: $83.1 million (top performer)

Mid-Hudson: $83.3 million (top performer)

New York City: $80.2 million (top performer)

Long Island: $62 million


I had a Common Roots IPA at The Low Beat recently. OK, maybe I had three... Really good beer. So me and my liver like to see them get this money.

This is awesome! Where do they get all this money? They should just keep giving us money and soon we will all be rich!

PS I freaking love the ukele playing hippie in the "walkway" that's going to be further "studied" for 375 grand.....priceless....would love to be at these meetings when they decide what they are going to show the public!

I really like the 787 feasibility study project. Those types of ramps pose some very thorny problems - its expensive to redevelop/demolish/refurbish no matter what. People sometimes sneer at study funding, but I've been involved in a few and they are usually worth every penny. That's how good projects end up successful, and how bad projects either morph into better ones or end up not happening. The return on investment is well worth doing your homework.

grandmastergus, I agree! I lucked into trying a Common Roots IPA a couple of months back and now order it every time I see it on tap.

I really wasn't expecting to see the Skyway thing go anywhere...ever. But I'm remaining cautiously optimistic, as it would be a really cool project and a great use of currently wasted infrastructure.

You need to look at some neighboring regions too.

No one has noticed the Trekonderoga 2017 grant (North Country) to promote the Star Trek set in Ticonderoga.

Bummer that the Palace's expansion project didn't make the list.

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