09.09.15

SCHUMER ANNOUNCES, FOLLOWING HIS PUSH, FULTON COUNTY WILL RECEIVE CRITICAL FED FUNDS NEEDED TO HELP TRANSFORM THE TRYON JUVENILE DETENTION CENTER INTO A NEW TECH PARK AND BIZ INCUBATOR – SENATOR PREVIOUSLY URGED FEDS TO SUPPORT PLAN THAT COULD BRING JOBS, WORKFORCE TRAINING, NEW START-UP COMPANIES TO AREA

Former Tryon Juvenile Detention Center Has Been Unoccupied For Years, But in 2014 Fulton County IDA Took Over The 40-Building, 515-Acre Site & Began Making Plans To Turn It Into Thriving Business Hub 

In August 2014, Schumer Visited Tryon Facility to Urge Northern Border Regional Commission To Provide Funding Fulton County Needed to Turn Central Building Into Vibrant Business Training Center – Fed Funds Will Allow Fulton IDA To Break Ground & Begin Plan To Bring A New Fulton Montgomery Community College Trade Program to the Tryon Campus 

Schumer: New Tryon Business Park & Incubator Has Potential To Transform Fulton County Economy

 

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today announced that the Northern Border Regional Commission (NBRC) has agreed to provide the critical federal funding that will allow Fulton County to transform the former Tryon Juvenile Detention Center, which has sat abandoned and unused for over three years, into a new technology park and business incubator. Schumer explained that, in 2014, Fulton County began making plans to transform the 515-acre property into a series of shovel-ready sites for businesses to move into and a hub for business incubation. During an August 2014 visit, Schumer pushed the NBRC to provide the federal funding the county needs to turn the central building on the Tryon campus into a business training center run by Fulton Montgomery Community College. Schumer explained that the county needed these federal funds to complete a series of renovations that will convert the building into lab and classroom spaces for a new Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Trades Program. Schumer said this $184,153 in federal funding will partially fund the renovation and allow the Fulton County IDA to break ground on this project. Schumer said that bringing this trade program to the Tryon Facility will encourage more start-up businesses and jobs to come to Tryon, which would be a major economic boost for the entire region.

“This federal funding is great news for Fulton County and will allow them to finally break ground on a new business training and incubation center that will completely transform the old Tryon Detention Center. This new facility will be exactly what is needed to jump-start this bold, ambitious plan to turn the center into a bustling hub for business and innovation,” said Senator Schumer. “The entire Tryon project – and the new incubator at the center of it – will now have the potential to attract new companies, create new jobs and reinvigorate the local economy. There is a real need for workers in these fields, and this incubator will be able to provide more local students with the skills needed to fill a host of jobs around the region.”

“We would like to thank Senator for all his help. This grant will help get out Tryon Incubator up and running and will prove to be a great job generator for Fulton County,” said Ronald M. Peters, President and CEO of the Fulton County Center for Regional Growth.

Schumer explained that, in 2014, Fulton County has applied for federal funding through the NBRC that would help it to transform the former Tyron Juvenile Detention Center. The detention center has sat unoccupied for over three years and plans are in place to turn it into a new technology park and business incubator. Schumer said that this federal NBRC funding will now allow the County to begin renovating the central building on the Tryon campus into a business training center. This center will be run by Fulton Montgomery Community College. During his August 2014 visit, Schumer explained that significant repairs will be needed before FMCC can convert the building into lab and classroom space for its new Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (HVACR) Trades Program. Specifically, the building’s heating, ventilation, air conditioning, plumbing, water, wastewater and electrical systems have been shut down since 2011. These systems must be restarted and repaired to make them operational. In addition, over the course of the time these systems have been turned off, the combined effect of heat and humidity and the lack of an operational ventilation system resulted in moisture damage and mold forming inside the building, that must be removed before the building can be reused.  The classrooms, laboratory, and workshop space will also need to be cleaned and painted before the HVACR Program can become operational. 

Schumer said that this new business training center will have the potential to inject life back into the local economy by preparing local residents to fill a number of open positions in HVACR fields. Many HVACR companies in the region have expressed concern about the worsening shortage of workers trained in the HVACR trades and are working with FMCC to provide this training by creating and operating the Trades Program. Local businesses in the area will also be able to use the space to provide training for their employees and staff. Schumer also said that this new training center will be the centerpiece of the entire Tryon redevelopment and propel new businesses to open up shop at the facility.

In 2011, New York State closed its Tyron Juvenile Detention facility, and the closing resulted in the loss of hundreds of local jobs. Ever since the closing, Fulton County has been working to turn this space into an economic hub for the county and region. The Tryon Campus consists of 515 acres of land, upon which approximately 40 buildings are located. The site already had municipal water and wastewater services to it as well as electricity and fiber optic services, making it a prime location for revitalization and repurposing. Fulton County, in conjunction with the Fulton County Industrial Development Agency, proposed transforming Tryon from a juvenile detention facility into shovel-ready sites for new businesses.

In January 2014, after almost three years of work, the title to the former Tryon Campus was transferred over to the Fulton County Industrial Development Agency. This year, Fulton County secured a $2,000,000 grant from Empire State Development to replace certain water and sewer infrastructure and rebuild a section of the internal access road. This work began in June 2014 and is expected to be completed by the end of the year. These infrastructure improvements will result in the creation of approximately 300 acres of shovel-ready sites. Schumer noted that the Tryon Technology Park and Incubator Center will be strategically located within New York State’s Tech Valley, centered between three key high-tech projects, including the College of Nanoscience and Engineering in Albany, Globalfoundaries in Malta, and Marcy Naocenter in Utica. Schumer also said that this entire project is a key component of the “Jump Start Fulton County” initiative that the county announced in the fall of 2013. Jump Start Fulton County is a series of economic development initiatives the County is undertaking to try and create new jobs, grow its tax base and strengthen the region’s economy.

Schumer’s initial letter to Sanford Blitz, Federal Co-Chair of the Northern Border Regional Commission, is included below:

 

Dear Mr. Blitz:

I am pleased to write in support of Fulton County’s application for funding under the2014 Federal Grant Program.  Such funding will enable Fulton County and Fulton-Montgomery Community College (FMCC), a component of the State University of New York, to rehabilitate recently-acquired space and, in turn allow FMCC to establish a new Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Trades Program at the site. 

FMCC does not currently have the space required for this HVACR Trades Program.  The Fulton County Industrial Development Agency (IDA) acquired existing space at the former Tryon Youth Detention Facility Campus and is converting this property into the Tryon Technology Park and Incubator Center.  FMCC plans to utilize space in Building 3 at the Tryon Technology Park and Incubator Center, which will ideally suit its needs.  The building has a central corridor with space for a lab on one side and space for a classroom directly opposite the lab.  This setup will provide quick and convenient access for students and faculty to go back and forth between the lab and classroom as needed.

FMCC plans to convert existing spaces in the Midas building into lab and classroom spaces to begin offering an HVACR Trades Program.  Building #3’s heating, ventilation, air conditioning, plumbing, water, wastewater and electrical systems have been shut down since 2011.  These systems must be restarted and repaired to make them operational.  During that time, the combined effect of heat and humidity and the lack of an operational ventilation system resulted in moisture damage and mold forming inside the building, that must be removed before the building can be reused.  The classrooms and laboratory/workshop space will also need to be cleaned and painted before the HVACR Program can become operational.  This Workforce Development Project will include repairing and restoring Building 3 so it can be utilized by FMCC to implement its HVACR Trades Program and to allow for Building 3 to start to be repurposed into a Regional Business Training Center.  This project will address the worsening shortage of workers trained in the HVACR field, and I applaud Fulton County and its partners for their foresight.  I sincerely hope the applications meet with your approval, and strongly urge your support.

Thank you for your consideration.  For additional information, please do not hesitate to contact me or my Grants Director in my Washington office.

Sincerely,

 

Charles E. Schumer

United States Senator

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