11.02.18

SCHUMER PLEDGES TO FIGHT FOR $12.2 MILLION GRANT TO UPGRADE, MODERNIZE AND REVITALIZE THE CITY OF BINGHAMTON’S VITAL DOWNTOWN TRANSPORTATION INFRASTRUCTURE; “THE MAIN STREET COMPLETE STREETS PROJECT” WILL BE AN INSTRUMENTAL BOOST IN CITY’S ONGOING REVITALIZATION EFFORT

“The Main Street Complete Streets Project” In Binghamton Would Significantly Enhance The Safety And Accessibility Of Transportation Throughout The City, But Hinges On Securing Over $12 Million In Funding From The Department Of Transportation

Standing At Binghamton’s City Hall, Schumer Launches Major Push To Secure Vital BUILD Grant To Complete Project; Says Project Could Be An Instrumental Boost In Binghamton’s Ongoing Revitalization Efforts

Schumer To Feds: Federal Funding Would Put Binghamton’s Main Street Redevelopment In The Express Lane and The Downtown Revitalization On The Road To Success

Standing at City Hall in downtown Binghamton, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today called on the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to support the City of Binghamton’s application for $12.2 million in federal funding through the Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development Transportation Discretionary Grants (BUILD) program. Schumer explained that the City of Binghamton, with support from the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT), would use the BUILD funding to undertake City Administration’s “Main Street Complete Streets Project,” which would establish a new, multi-modal transportation and urban design system in Downtown Binghamton. Schumer explained that Binghamton’s Main Street Corridor is the city’s retail, residential and educational spine that serves as the primary connection between the city’s downtown area and the west end of the city. However, although the Corridor is traveled by a wide range of pedestrians, cyclists, bus riders, motorists, and a diverse group of residents, students and tourists alike, the current infrastructure is greatly limited in many areas and cannot accommodate the ongoing rise of usage as the city continues to grow and the diverse types of transportation in a safe and efficient manner. Schumer said that this federal funding is critical to further the ongoing success of Binghamton’s downtown revitalization effort, support existing investment and bring vital economic development to the Main Street Corridor through increased accessibility and improvements to the safety of the transportation system. Schumer strongly believes that the Main Street Complete Streets Project would be a boost to transportation in Binghamton, enhance connectivity among Binghamton University Academic Campuses in the urban cores, and provide a shot in the arm to the Broome County economy, and urged the DOT to award with all due speed.

“Everyone who’s been to the City of Binghamton knows that the downtown Main Street Corridor is the lifeblood of this city. The Corridor is Binghamton’s retail, residential, and educational backbone. As the primary connection between the downtown base and the west end of the City, it’s imperative that the federal government do all it can to help support the growth and expansion of the Main Street Corridor. Whether you’re a student leaving Binghamton High School or cyclist trying to get to your job downtown, it’s important that we provide the safest and most efficient route possible. This is why the completion of Binghamton’s Main Street Complete Streets Project, including the construction of a modern, safe, multi-modal transportation and urban design system, is critical to the continued revitalization of the City, and an award of $12.2 million in BUILD grant funding from DOT is the next step in breaking ground on this much-needed project,” said Senator Schumer. “So today I’m calling on the DOT to give full and fair consideration to Binghamton’s application to the BUILD program and award this funding ASAP, as the Main Street Complete Streets project would significantly improve transportation access and safety in Binghamton, help support and encourage new investment along this major thoroughfare, and enhance the Broome County economy.”

Schumer explained that with the BUILD funding, the City of Binghamton, with support from NYSDOT, will commence work on the $12.2 million Main Street Complete Streets Project by constructing a multi-modal transportation and urban design system to connect the major economic and cultural institutions in the City. Schumer said that the transportation system will make accommodations for bike and pedestrian traffic and reallocate street space to provide a safe, efficient, and inviting public space between the building faces.

Schumer said that while Main Street attracts a high volume of bicycle traffic, there are currently no bike lanes on the road, decreasing safety for bicyclists. Additionally, Main Street is currently lacking in bus stops that are comfortable for people waiting to ride the bus and easy to identify. And finally, the City’s current Main Street sidewalk system is worn down and outdated, without clear crosswalk markings for pedestrians. Schumer explained that the Main Street Complete Streets Project would remedy all of these issues, by establishing safer bike lanes, constructing improved bus stops, and creating a new sidewalk system, complete with well-marked crosswalks and trees to provide pedestrians shade.

"With the help of Senator Schumer, we're working to advance a comprehensive and transformative Main Street upgrade that will benefit residents and businesses. The project would create a safe and walkable corridor in our urban core, enhancing multimodal transportation with a total reconstruction. Fixing the City's crumbling infrastructure is a top priority of mine, and it's clear Senator Schumer shares that commitment. Senator Schumer is fighting in Washington for Binghamton — and communities across Upstate New York — to secure funding to advance important local infrastructure programs," said Binghamton Mayor Richard C. David.

Schumer said that increasing the accessibility of the Main Street Corridor will support the economic growth of the Corridor’s businesses and preserve transportation infrastructure for the long-term future. Schumer applauded the City of Binghamton for its foresight in seeing how this project could pay huge dividends for the City, and strongly encouraged DOT to support its application for BUILD funding.

The DOT’s BUILD program, previously known as the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) Discretionary Grant Program, was developed to spur a national competition for innovative, multi-modal and multi-jurisdictional transportation projects that promise significant economic and environmental benefits to an entire metropolitan area, a region or the nation. Projects that typically receive BUILD grants include improvements to roads, bridges, rail, ports, transit and intermodal facilities, and Schumer noted that the Main Street Complete Streets Project plan fits squarely within the program’s mission.

A copy of Schumer’s letter to DOT appears below.

Dear Secretary Chao:

I am pleased to write in support of the application submitted by the City of Binghamton for funding through the Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development Transportation Discretionary Grants program. Such funding will enable Binghamton and its partners, Broome County and the New York State Department of Transportation, to undertake the Main Street Complete Streets Project

The City of Binghamton, in Broome County, is home to approximately 47,400 people. Its Main Street Corridor is part of the retail, residential, and educational spine for the city, as well as connecting the downtown core and the west end of the City. While Main Street attracts a great diversity of visitors, from pedestrians to cyclists to motorists, the current infrastructure is limited in many sections and cannot accommodate all types of users in a safe and efficient manner.

With funding, the City of Binghamton will construct a multi-modal transportation and urban design system to connect the major economic and cultural institutions in the city. It will make accommodations for bike and pedestrian traffic and reallocate street space to provide a safe, efficient, and inviting public space between the building faces. Increasing the accessibility of the Corridor will support the economic growth of the corridor’s businesses and preserve transportation infrastructure in the long term. I applaud the City of Binghamton for its foresight, and sincerely hope the application meets with your approval.

Thank you for your consideration. Please do not hesitate to contact me or my Grants Coordinator in Washington, DC at 202-224-6542.

Sincerely,

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