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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 3, 2008

Schumer Goes To Bat For Jamestown Gateway Intermodal Station And Riverwalk Projects: Urges Federal Transit Admin. To Expedite Approval Of Jamestown's Bid For Certified Grantee Status, Necessary For Project To Move Forward


In 2005, Schumer Helped Secure Almost $3 Million in Federal Funds for the Riverwalk Connector Trail, the Revitalization of Erie Lackawanna Railroad Station, an Art-Deco Landmark in Downtown Jamestown Abandoned Since 1973

Because Jamestown Lacks the Authority to Disperse Federal Funds to Jumpstart Project, City Must Apply for Special Certification from FTA to Secure Previously Allocated Federal Dollars

Schumer: With the Rail Station Essential to Revitalizing the Downtown Area, Approval Must be Expedited to Free Up These Much-Needed Funds.

Today, Senator Charles E. Schumer urged the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to expedite approval of the City of Jamestown’s application to become a certified grantee for the receipt of already allocated FTA funds. Senator Schumer secured funds in 2005 for the Jamestown Gateway Station Intermodal and Visitors Center project and the completion of the Jamestown Riverwalk Connector Trail. These projects would jumpstart the long-awaited revitalization of the vacant Erie Lackawanna Railroad Station and reconnect the historic station to the Riverwalk Connector Trail now underway along the Chadakoin River. However, both projects are stalled as the City of Jamestown seeks critical FTA certification to process the federal funds secured in 2005.

 

Because the City of Jamestown lacks a certified agency, such as a regional transit authority, to receive these federal funds, they must apply for grantee status through the FTA, a complex process that can take months.

 

Schumer today wrote a personal letter to FTA Administrator James S. Simpson, urging him to expedite approval of the City of Jamestown’s application for certified grantee status so the project can finally get underway

 

 “Reclaiming the landmark Erie Lackawanna Railroad Station is a linchpin to revitalization efforts in the downtown area,” said Senator Schumer. “It’s time for this critical project to move full speed ahead. I urge FTA to expedite approval of the City of Jamestown’s request so this project can be sped through to final design and construction early this year.”

 

In 2005, Schumer helped secure $2.6 million for the City of Jamestown in the Surface Transportation Reauthorization Bill, entitled the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, and Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). These funds are to be used for the Jamestown Gateway Station Intermodal and Visitors Center project and the completion of the Jamestown Riverwalk Connector Trail.

 

“We need the FTA to cut through the bureaucratic red tape so that Jamestown can use the already allocated funds to jumpstart this essential project,” said Schumer.

 

These two projects are vital to the progress of redevelopment efforts in downtown Jamestown, Schumer noted, as they would jumpstart the long-awaited renovation of the historic Erie Lackawanna Railroad Station, an Art Deco landmark vacant since 1973, and reconnect the station to the Riverwalk Connector Trail now underway along the Chadakoin River, by a new pedestrian bridge over the downtown rail corridor.

 

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