Ulster County to host outdoor event series at former TechCity

Last year, there were outdoor film screenings at the location. More extensive arts offerings are planned for 2021.

Ulster County executive Pat Ryan announced last week that Ulster County will host an outdoor summer event series on the grounds of Enterprise West — the former TechCity and before that, the IBM campus — thanks to a collaboration with the newly established arts organization BLUEprint. The group is a collective of local artists, musicians and designers who have run concert venues, operated design studios and built art and music studios, and have previously established successful festivals in the Hudson Valley, including the O+ Festival. BLUEprint co-directors are Kingston residents Molly Sterrs, Kyle McDonough, Joe Concra, Micah Blumenthal, Jared Ashdown and Eliza Edge.

“Ulster County has a diverse pool of talented artists and musicians, and I am so excited that they are bringing their creativity to bear to help lead the rebirth and renewal of the former IBM site,” said county executive Pat Ryan. “The arts aren’t a luxury; they are for everyone. I’m thrilled to see the grounds of Enterprise West come alive this summer with community-driven programming that will benefit all of our residents.”

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The BLUEprint summer series will be located on the former IBM parking lot and fields at 101 Enterprise Drive in the Town of Ulster, and specific programming details will be announced at an upcoming date. Planned events include outdoor concerts, as well as an outdoor movie series. Interested community organizations can apply to host an event by visiting www.blueprinthv.com and filling out an application form. Last summer, the current BLUEprint location hosted thousands of Ulster County residents for free summer movies and also welcomed hundreds to the Phoenicia Festival of the Voice, which will return this year for an expanded series August 27 to 29.

“BLUEprint’s adaptive reuse of the former IBM for community benefit is a significant step forward in transforming the West Campus,” said Town of Ulster supervisor James Quigley. “I look forward to this positive utilization.”

“BLUEprint is about mapping the future without knowing the result – it is a living map,” said BLUEprint team member Saidee Sonnenberg. “BLUEprint seeks to be a destination that champions the creativity of makers and artists who are the backbone of Ulster County. We are an inclusive, people-first organization that respects the diverse landscape of our community and welcomes all event proposals for the Enterprise West campus.”

Enterprise West is comprised of two parcels on over 80 acres of land and a 400,000-square-foot office building that was last used in 2015 as a tax processing center by Bank of America. The property ownership was recently transferred to the Ulster County Economic Development Alliance, a move proposed by the county executive and approved unanimously by the Ulster County Legislature.

In March 2021, Ulster County announced that more than 20 proposals were received for the redevelopment of all or part of Enterprise West, including five to purchase some or all of the site, 11 to rent or lease some or all of the site and 12 to provide services to assist the county in redeveloping the site. Proposals ranged from a satellite college campus, arts and maker space and agricultural manufacturing facilities.

An Enterprise West Advisory Committee, which includes Sarah Haley, Tim Weidemann, Brian Cahill, Zac Kleinhandler, Jim Quigley, Laura Hartman and Yvonne Wynkoop, is currently evaluating the proposals for the campus.