Skip to content


Schumer Fought Relentlessly For Years, Writing And Calling Transportation Secretary Buttigieg Personally, For Kingston’s Long Desired Project To Transform Downtown 

Now, After Schumer Rallied In Kingston Last Year, Senator Has Secured Highly Competitive Federal RAISE Grant For Kingston To Reimagine The Rondout Waterfront, Increase Walkability, Biking, Flood Protections, And Reconnect Kingston Neighborhoods

Schumer: Over $21 Million Will Revitalize Downtown And Give Kingston Access To Picturesque Waterfront Community It Has Long Deserved!

After standing in Kingston’s downtown to push for federal funding last year, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer today announced he has secured a game changing $21.7 million through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) grant program to boost transportation and transform Kingston’s waterfront.

The senator fought relentlessly alongside local leaders including Mayor Steve Noble, writing and personally calling Transportation Secretary Buttigieg to secure the award. The senator also secured historic increases in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act that have allowed more projects to be awarded, like in Kingston. Schumer said that this long awaited federal funding will significantly expand the walkability of the waterfront through new paths and greenways, connect residents from underserved neighborhoods to the downtown, and bolster the historic waterfront business district.

“Last year I stood in Kingston with a coalition of community members, including Mayor Steve Noble, and promised that I would not stop fighting for them until we reconnected our neighborhoods to Kingston’s historic Rondout waterfront area to transform and revitalize the downtown. Today, I am pleased to say a promise made to the people of Kingston is now a promise kept. This game-changing $21+ million is the missing piece of the puzzle to help Kingston revitalize the Rondout waterfront, bringing the city one step closer to a more vibrant, beautiful and equitable downtown, creating good paying jobs, and bolstering economic opportunity for all,” said Senator Schumer. “Our infrastructure should connect, not divide the city, and with this highly-competitive grant heading to the Hudson Valley, I am thrilled to help one of the true gems of Kingston – the Rondout waterfront – finally shine to its truest potential. As majority leader, when I led the bipartisan Infrastructure & Jobs Law to passage, I had project’s like Kingston’s downtown revitalization in mind because it will be the catalyst for a total Rondout reboot – benefiting our residents, businesses, and visitors alike. I am excited to see this major funding work in tandem with the historic wins from my Bipartisan Infrastructure & Jobs Law to increase quality of life, reconnect neighborhoods to the waterfront, and revitalize the local economy.”

Specifically, Schumer said this $21.7 million in federal funding will fully fund Kingston’s “Weaving the Waterfront Transportation Project,” investing in the design and construction for walking and biking connections on trails and streets from neighborhoods to business districts, open space, and parks along the Rondout Creek and the Hudson River in Kingston, NY. Schumer explained that the funding will go towards five major projects to help connect Kingston’s neighborhoods:

  • Kingston Point Rail Trail Phase 2: A brand new 10-to-12-foot-wide path for pedestrians and bicyclists will be built, which will be ADA-compliant and include fencing, interpretation of historical places, and a building to display 9/11 artifacts.
  • East Strand and North Street Complete Streets: Develop 1.2 miles of ADA-compliant sidewalks, multi-use paths, urban street trees, and bike lanes along roads parallel to Rondout Creek, providing shade, capturing stormwater, and promoting species biodiversity.
  • Kingston Point Rail Trail Phase 3 – Trolley Trail: A new 0.72-mile climate-resilient boardwalk along the causeway, adjacent to the trolley tracks, showcasing the area's rich pre-historic legacy, and preserving Kingston's history and natural beauty.
  • Rotary Park & Kingston Point Park Pedestrian Connections/Raising of Delaware Avenue: Completion of the Empire State Trail/Hudson River Brickyards Trail connections through Rotary Park and Kingston Point Park with a safe, accessible path to improve pedestrian and bicycle access.
  • North Street Complete Streets: Extension of complete Streets along North Street with a new 10-to-12-foot paved pathway connecting to the Hudson River Brickyard Trail and installation of three new electrical vehicle charging stations at key locations.
  • East Strand Flood Protections: Elevate two portions of East Strand to protect from climate and sea level change in a flood-prone area.

Schumer explained that the $21.7M RAISE grant (formerly known as BUILD or TIGER) Kingston has just received is a highly competitive national grant program through the U.S. Department of Transportation which funds transportation projects of national and regional significance. The senator secured historic increases for the program in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, at $7.5 billion over five years, with $1.5 billion per year. The City of Kingston applied for funding through RAISE for their “Weaving the Waterfront Transportation Project” for 3 years in a row. Last year, Schumer visited Kingston, and he has written and personally called Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg multiple times advocating for the project. When Kingston did not receive the grant in earlier rounds, Schumer assisted the City of Kingston in obtaining technical assistance through U.S. DOT to bolster and improve their application. The senator thanked Mayor Noble for his persistence and vision in getting this done.

“We are so thrilled to win this monumental award, and wholeheartedly thank Senator Schumer for his tireless advocacy for Kingston. He sees, like we do, Kingston’s need for connection to our breathtaking natural resources, making these assets accessible to residents of all abilities, and protecting our downtown homes and businesses from a changing climate. This grant will not only make an entire neighborhood safer, it will beautify the area, and bring sustainable growth to the waterfront. Thank you, Secretary Buttigieg and the USDOT, for supporting Kingston with the largest grant in our City’s history and believing in our vision for what our waterfront can become,” said City of Kingston Mayor Steve Noble.

"The Ulster County Chamber of Commerce applauds Senator Schumer's work to secure this significant investment in Kingston's waterfront. This funding will create new economic opportunities for our region, enhance our infrastructure, and promote sustainable transportation options. We look forward to working with our local partners to ensure that this investment benefits our businesses and residents, and we thank Senator Schumer for his continued support of Ulster County and the Hudson Valley," said Ulster County Chamber of Commerce President Ward Todd.

"This historic investment of over $21 million secured by Senator Schumer is a game-changer for Kingston's waterfront and downtown areas. The funding will increase walkability, biking, and flood protections, while also creating new opportunities for economic growth and job creation in the community. We commend Senator Schumer for his unwavering dedication to this project and look forward to seeing the positive impact it will have on the Hudson Valley region," said Mike Oates, President and CEO of HVEDC.

In addition, Schumer explained that the region will benefit from several programs included in the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act (IIJA), including $11.5 billion in new highway funding for New York State. This amount includes an estimated $289 million for New York in Transportation Alternatives funds to build out walking and biking facilities. Local entities like the Ulster County bus system, UCAT, will also get a major boost from the IIJA with $ 8,062,133 in direct funding, which is on top of the nearly $5 million UCAT received in the CARES Act, and $1,310,895 from the American Rescue Plan. The senator also secured $17.3 Million in flexible local aid for the City of Kingston in the American Rescue Plan.

A copy of Senator Schumer’s original letter to Secretary Buttigieg supporting Kingston’s RAISE application appears below:

Dear Secretary Buttigieg: 

I am pleased to once again write in support of the grant application submitted by the City of Kingston to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s 2023 RAISE Transportation Discretionary Grants Program for the Kingston Weaving the Waterfront Transportation Project.  The City of Kingston aims to construct much-needed active transportation infrastructure, electric vehicle charging stations, and flood resilience measures throughout its downtown waterfront area. The proposed project will ignite economic growth by revitalizing the City’s picturesque waterfront while making it more accessible to Kingston residents seeking social services and job opportunities.

The City of Kingston has worked closely with my office on its Local Waterfront Revitalization Program, a locally prepared comprehensive land and water use plan for the City’s natural, public, and developed waterfront resources along the Hudson River and Rondout Creek.  Early last year, I helped secure $100,000 in federal funding for the Army Corps of Engineers to study stabilizing the bulkhead on the Rondout Creek, a key first step to revamping the waterfront. Having long worked with Kingston and Ulster County officials to ensure the continuity of social services and economic success in the area, I am confident that this crucial federal investment in the Kingston Weaving the Waterfront Transportation project will deliver much-needed infrastructure improvements to the City while also advancing equity and economic opportunity for its residents.

 Specifically, this project will provide critical multi-modal commuting and recreational non-vehicular transportation routes that connect the City’s residents and visitors from lower-income neighborhoods and the Midtown and Waterfront business districts to the waterfront area along the Rondout Creek and the Hudson River. The paths in this area, also known as the Rondout Riverport, will provide viable commuter corridors for circulation to and from the historic business district, complete the Kingston Greenline and the Empire State Trail at the Waterfront, and connect to the region’s 520-acre Sojourner Truth State Park.

The Kingston Weaving the Waterfront Transportation Project also addresses current and predicted flooding from the tidal Rondout Creek and Hudson River by elevating roadways where spring high tide threatens to damage existing infrastructure and prevent access to one of the most frequented public parks for the City.  Additionally, the project will create three new electric vehicle charging stations at key locations to fill out an expanding network of charging stations in the City. This initiative will ensure that practical, sustainable, easy-to-navigate carbon-free solutions are available for commuting to business districts and enjoying the cultural, recreational, and natural amenities of this unique area.

I strongly urge the U.S. DOT to support the City of Kingston’s request and applaud the City for its foresight. Thank you for your consideration of this important surface transportation project of local, regional, and State significance.