JAMESTOWN – Officials with the New York State Western New York Regional Economic Development Council will be coming to Jamestown next week to get a first-hand look at how the state’s $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) investment will be used, along with an update on other projects that have benefited from state funding in recent years.
During Monday’s Jamestown City Council meeting, Jamestown mayor Sam Teresi said that WNYREDC members will hold a meeting on Monday, Aug 14 at the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts. He said that if weather allows, they will also do a walking tour of downtown Jamestown to learn about recent economic development initiatives in the city, including those that will benefit from the $10 million DRI grant awarded to the city in 2016, along with funding from the Consolidated Funding Application program.
“They’re interested in doing a walking tour of the downtown area to see some of the projects that are underway or being planed and that are being assisted with Consolidated Funding Application resources and also the projects that are receiving funding through the DRI,” Teresi said.
According to the mayor, nearly $200 million in development has taken place in the city’s downtown through various public-private partnerships since the early 2000s, when the $23 million Northwest Arena was first built. Other major projects include the $25 million National Comedy Center, $14 million Gateway Train Station Restoration, $14 million for the Hilton Double Tree Hotel, $12 million for the Jamestown Area Medical Associates development in Brooklyn Square, $22 million to replace the Washington St. Bridge, and $10 million in downtown public parking facilities.
The mayor said that next week’s meeting will be the first that has taken place during the past six years in Jamestown, or any southern Tier Community.
“this is the first meeting that they have held that has been more than five miles or so off of a thruway interchange. So we are quite pleased to finally get them to come to Jamestown,” the mayor said. “I think one of the reasons they are looking to come to Jamestown isn’t just out of obligation, because they see a need for the council to get out through the southern tier counties of Western New York, but also because the members truly do what to come and see in person what is happening here.”
As far as the projects that will benefit from the recent $10 million DRI Grant, Teresi said he’s hopeful that once next week’s meeting takes place the funding will be released to the respective developers and work can get underway, especially for the Hilton Double Tree Hotel on 4th St., which officials would like to see open for business in time for the 2018 Lucille Ball Comedy Festival and 2018 Babe Ruth World Series, both which are slated for August 2018.