Six projects in Kingston will receive a total of $4.2 million in state funding next year under New York’s Consolidated Funding Application program. The funded projects include a proposed mixed-use retail, hotel and parking facility in the Stockade District and the creation of a more scenic and more bike-and-pedestrian friendly streetscape in Midtown. Overall, the Mid-Hudson region raked in $84.8 million.
The grants were announced Wednesday, Dec. 13. The CFA program, which replaced the old system of legislative “member items” to fund local projects, was introduced back in 2011, ostensibly to bring more transparency and predictability to the process of doling out billions in state funds for public and private sector initiatives. Applications are submitted by municipalities, nonprofits and corporations; the applications are then scored by a regional committee of the state’s Economic Development Agency. The committee weighs factors like how many jobs a project could create and how well it aligns with local and regional economic development goals. The regional council’s scores are then passed on to the EDA’s headquarters for further vetting.
In recent years, Kingston has fared well in the CFA process, reaping millions for a revamped Broadway streetscape, rail trails and other projects. This year, three City of Kingston sponsored projects were awarded CFA funds. They include:
- $750,000 for the Midtown Kingston Franklin Complete Streets Project. The project will expand the city’s “complete streets” program which aims to create more modern and safer streetscapes. The grant will pay for design and construction of improvements on the entire length of Franklin Street. Upgrades include new sidewalks, and Americans With Disabilities Act compliant crosswalks.
- $62,960 for the Kingston Organic Waste Management Plan. The grant will fund the development of alternative strategies for dealing with food waste currently trucked out of the city. In a press release, Mayor Steve Noble noted the plan will bring the city closer to achieving a “silver” certification through the state’s Climate-Smart Communities program. The waste management plan would include a feasibility study for a residential and commercial organic waste collection program as well as food waste collection and composting at government buildings and at city sponsored events. “This grant will help us plan for how best to reduce the waste stream and save taxpayer dollars,” Noble wrote in a press release.
- $178,000 for Kingston Waterfront Empire State Trail improvements. This grant will pay for improvements along a 0.75-mile stretch of trail running along the Hudson River between North Street and the start of the promenade just south of John Street. The project, Noble said, would improve bike and pedestrian access to the trail.
More for Uptown
In addition to the city-sponsored projects, three nonprofit and private sector initiatives received funding through the CFA process. They include:
- $2 million for The Kingstonian project. The grant will go to JM Development Group LLC which is in the process of redeveloping a city-owned parking lot off of Schwenk Drive. The plan, which would also incorporate a parcel on Fair Street extension, calls for the creation of a mixed-use building to house residences, retail a boutique hotel and 250 public parking spaces.
- $1 million for the Hutton Brickyards Redevelopment Project. The grant will help private-sector developer North Street Brick Works LLC build in its efforts to create an entertainment venue on the riverside site or the former Hutton Brickyards. In recent years the venue has played host to the Smorgasburg food festival and a pair of Bob Dylan concerts. Developers hope to expand the offerings at the brickyard by creating a boutique hotel and other amenities at the site.
- $242,500 for Stockade Works. The grant will help fund RUPCO’s build-out of a 70,000-square-foot commercial space on in a former furniture factory on South Prospect Street. The building’s anchor tenant is expected to be the Stockade Works film production facility. The grant will help fund the creation of the media and technology hub which will include a 99-seat theater, a soundstage and post-production facilities.
Also, the Town of Ulster got $750,000 for wastewater infrastructure improvements in the Spring Lake Sewer District.
These awards complement the City of Kingston’s recent $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative Grant that will promote the region’s hospitality, housing, agriculture, arts community and growing technology sector,” Assemblyman Kevin Cahill said in a statement. “Together these funds will boost employment and quality of life in the region.”