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Utica awarded $10M to revive downtown area

The city of Utica will receive $10 million as part of the state’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative. These DRI grants are awarded to cities that meet certain criteria that warrants the investment as determined by the state.

Posted: Nov 12, 2019 1:37 PM
Updated: Nov 12, 2019 1:39 PM

UTICA, N.Y. -- The city of Utica will receive $10 million as part of New York state’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative. These DRI grants are awarded to cities that meet certain criteria, which warrants the investments frome the state.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo was at the Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute Tuesday to make the announcement.

"Utica's recent growth shows the city has immense potential as a business hub and cultural destination,” said Cuomo. "Like other downtown communities here in the Mohawk Valley and across the state, the Genesee Street neighborhood has an opportunity to maximize its potential as a Downtown Revitalization Initiative winner, and we look forward to seeing the local community's vision for itself come to life."

The DRI funding is intended to revitalize existing downtown neighborhoods and add enhancements to the areas to foster new growth opportunities. Oneonta, Rome and Amsterdam were the Mohawk Valley's winners in the first three DRI rounds, each receiving $10 million.

"Thanks to this substantial investment of state funding, the future is looking even brighter for Utica and the Mohawk Valley. This DRI award will enable local leaders to reinvigorate the neighborhood surrounding Genesee Street and breathe new life into our communities,” said Assemblywoman Marianne Buttenschon.

The grants have been used by other areas to revitalize historic or vacant buildings, fund transit initiatives and support housing developments.

Utica will now begin developing a strategic investment plan using up to $300,000 in planning funds from the grant.

A local planning committee will be assembled, consisting of municipal representatives and community leaders, who will be supported by a team of private sector experts and state planners.

The strategic investment plan for downtown Utica will help identify opportunities to implement or enhance transportation, housing, and community projects that align with the downtown revitalization initiative.

Plans for the DRI's fourth round will be complete in 2020.

For more information on the Downtown Revitalization Initiative, go to: www.ny.gov/programs/downtown-revitalization-initiative.

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