Schumer, Clinton: Over $2 Million For Hudson Valley Projects Included In Final Transportation, Housing And Urban Development Bill

Funding Included in Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Bill Approved by House-Senate Conferees Today

U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Hillary Rodham Clinton today announced that the HouseSenate Conference Committee has agreed on a final version of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (TTHUD) FY08 Appropriations Bill, which includes $200,000 for the City of Newburgh's Armory District Revitalization Plan, $780,000 for the replacement of buses in the Westchester County BeeLine Bus System, $780,000 for the City of Poughkeepsie Transit Hub, and $312,000 for the Haverstraw Ferry Terminal. The bill now goes to the full House and Senate for final approval before heading to the President for his signature.

"These funds will support truly innovative transportation and urban development projects in the Hudson Valley," Schumer said. "The Newburgh project will revitalize and restore the Armory District, fueling the exciting economic development taking place in that wonderful Hudson River city. The new environmentallyfriendly bus fleet in Westchester puts that county at the cuttingedge of environmentally sound mass transit. The improved ferry operations in Haverstraw supports a vital new transportation option for Rockland County commuters. And the new transit hub for Poughkeepsie will significantly improve commuting services for Dutchess County and the whole Hudson Valley."

"The conference committee's approval of this bill is another important step in securing funds for these projects in the Hudson Valley. These funds for the Revitalization Planning and Development of Newburgh's Armory District will further assist with the redevelopment of their facilities, helping to improve the neighborhood both physically and economically. I am pleased that the funds for the Poughkeepsie Transit Hub will facilitate the construction of a centralized public transit center that will help to alleviate disruptive traffic congestion. Much needed support will also be provided for the Westchester County Department of Transportation BeeLine Bus System to replace outdated buses that will decrease emissions, and give residents a cleaner, greener ride," Senator Clinton said. "The fund for the Haverstraw Ferry Terminal will help to increase parking capacity, improve passenger waiting facilities, and increase access from Manhattan which will greatly contribute to the economic growth of the area and relieve congestion."

The City of Newburgh's Armory District Revitalization Planning and Development program will receive $200,000 of federal funds to be used for planning and design efforts within the City's Armory District. Implementation will include corridor planning utilizing the principles of urban design, the development of architectural designs, and mixeduse commercial development planning. The support of this initiative via the Economic Development Initiative (EDI) will aid the redevelopment of this deteriorating corridor. Coordinating and planning the improvement for this corridor will help ensure economic vitality and neighborhood restoration, as well as support current and future private rehabilitation occurring in the corridor. Newburgh is located in Orange County.

The Westchester County Department of Transportation BeeLine Bus System's Low Emission/ADA Accessible Replacement Buses project will receive $780,000 of federal funds to replaces buses to decrease emissions. Westchester County proposes the replacement of 114 overage buses in the County public transit fleet, 30 of which are not ADA accessible. This money will fund busses ordered in 2006 through 2008, to be delivered in 2007 through 2009.

The Haverstraw Ferry Terminal will receive $312,000 of federal funds to upgrade the ferry service to Lower Manhattan. The Haverstraw Ferry Terminal currently serves the HaverstrawOssining ferry, and will serve the HaverstrawYonkersLower Manhattan ferry service in the near future. Currently, there are limited parking and waiting facilities available at the site for passengers. These funds will be used to make parking and landside improvements, such as a climatecontrolled facility large enough to accommodate up to 100 passengers. When it is time for the ferry to move to their future, permanent home (several years from now), the passenger waiting facility structure can be relocated.

The City of Poughkeepsie Transit Hub will receive $780,000 of federal funds to build a combination Public Transit Hub and Parking Deck in the central business district to serve as a hub for city, county and private bus riders and provide resident parking. The City of Poughkeepsie is in the planning stages for a Public Transit Hub to be located on a Cityowned surface parking lot in the central business district. The structure will serve two muchneeded purposes by providing parking to residents and visitors and by serving as a transportation hub for bus riders on city, county, and intercity privately operated bus services. This project combines transit and economic development components. The first floor of the facility will serve the bus systems and their riders, and the upper floors will provide public parking spaces in support of the City's revitalization and redevelopment of the Luckey, Platt Building, the centerpiece of Main Street redevelopment efforts and a National Historic Landmark. The 150,000 squarefoot building is currently being redeveloped by private owners as a mixed retailmarket rate residential project.

The bus systems and their riders are in dire need of a convenient and suitable location for downtown riders to wait for a bus or to transfer to another bus. Currently, riders must assemble at an onstreet transfer point/bus stop. The current location does not accommodate the number of buses that are at that location during peak times, and riders have to wait at the curb or in a limited number of bus shelters. Within the Hub, the ground floor of the facility will house the transit hub with covered spaces for passengers and buses to enter, wait, and exit. Bus service will be maintained at its current location, but the transfer point for all buses will become the Transit Hub. Shuttle bus service from the Transit Hub to the MetroNorth and Amtrak Station may be an option as the City redevelops. Buses from the City Bus system, the Dutchess County Loop bus system, and regional intercity bus services will use the facility.
The bill now goes to the full House and Senate for final approval before heading to the President for his signature.

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