June 16, 2014

Schumer, Gillibrand Push to Secure Federal Funding That Will Improve Access To & Spur Redevelopment of Isolated Former Glenwood Power Plant in Yonkers – Better Transportation Is Key to Turning Plant into World-Class Cultural Center & Redeveloping Waterfront Area for Residents, Business, Tourism

Schumer, Gillibrand Push for $14M TIGER Grant to Construct, Develop Glenwood Area Road Network - Network Would Spur Glenwood Power Plant Revitalization & Encourage Growth Along Waterfront

Today, U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand launched their push to secure a $14 million federal grant that would spur the ongoing revitalization of the Glenwood Power Plant, and the surrounding area, by improving access to the site. Schumer and Gillibrand announced that they are seeking the funding for this project through the federal Department of Transportation’s TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) Grant program, which provides funding for road, rail, transit and port projects that promise to achieve critical national objectives. This funding would allow the City of Yonkers to construct a network of new roads, a bridge, and make improvements to various esplanades in order to revitalize the long-abandoned plant and connect its campus to the adjacent Metro-North Glenwood Station. The redevelopment of this former power plant into an exhibition space, complete with a hotel, restaurants and cultural programming, will serve as a multi-faceted catalyst for economic growth and prove beneficial to residents and business. Schumer and Gillibrand explained that, critical to the success of restoring this former industrial area is its link to the Metro-North Station—with convenient access to New York City’s Grand Central Terminal—because seamlessly connecting the Power Plant development to public transportation will provide residents and visitors with an easier way of getting to the site, and make it more attractive for businesses to locate there. The proposed project would create over 2,000 jobs overall; 1,500 construction jobs and an estimated 700 operations jobs in numerous sectors including production, food, hospitality, retail, service and management. 

“This federal funding can boost Yonkers’s economy by speeding up the redevelopment of the century-old former power plant, which promises to be a game-changer for the entire waterfront area,” said Senator Schumer. “These funds will allow the City of Yonkers to build a series of roads that will better connect the Power Plant with the Glenwood Metro-North Train Station, a critical link to ensure the project’s success. Building this missing link will enable visitors and residents from New York City and throughout the region to visit the site, and encourage businesses to locate there. By bringing in customers and businesses, we can reinvigorate the waterfront area.”

"The waterfront of Yonkers is bursting with potential for economic growth,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This critical investment will help transform the Glenwood Power Plant and the surrounding area into places for New Yorkers to live, work, attract new businesses, create thousands of new jobs, and help our economy thrive.”

This grant would revive the area by improving the series of vehicular, pedestrian and bicycle paths that connect to the isolated former power plant. In particular, it will allow for easier access to the Metro-North Glenwood Station – which provides a direct link to Grand Central Terminal – and the broader surface transportation network. Schumer and Gillibrand explained that the project would be split into two phases, with completion of the Power Plant rehabilitation planned for 2016 and the subsequent, necessary transit improvements for 2020. The plans for the Glenwood Power Plant site include transforming the three buildings into an exhibition space with a hotel, multiple restaurants and cultural programming.

In January 2013, Schumer stood at the former plant’s “turbine hall,” a graffiti-covered space that would be one of the buildings transformed as part of the Power Plant revitalization, and pushed for federal funding that would renovate the iconic “smoke stack building” into a hotel and exhibition hall. Schumer has been a longtime supporter of revamping this power plant into a space that would be a boon to the local waterfront economy.

The Glenwood Power Plant in Yonkers was constructed between 1904 and 1906 to hold electrical generators to provide power for the electrification of the railroad. It has been closed since 1963 and has been an eyesore by locals for more than 50 years. Schumer and Gillibrand said that, rather than stand vacant for another 50 years, the former plant should be converted into something that will be beneficial to residents and businesses in the area, and a space that can provide economic benefits to the waterfront and surrounding community. Schumer and Gillibrand explained that the transportation improvements that would be funded by this TIGER grant would help speed up the revitalization.

The TIGER Discretionary Grant program provides an opportunity for DOT to invest in road, rail, transit and port projects that promise to achieve critical national objectives. In each round of TIGER, DOT receives many applications to build and repair critical pieces of freight and passenger transportation networks.

A copy of Senator Schumer’s letter to Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx is included below and Senator Gillibrand’s letter is attached: 

Dear Secretary Foxx:

I am pleased to write in support of the application submitted by the City of Yonkers for funding under the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery Grant (TIGER VI) Program. Such funding will enable the City of Yonkers to construct the Glenwood Power Plant Road Network.

This funding will allow the City of Yonkers to construct the Glenwood Power Plant Road Network. This transit network would revive the area by constructing a series of new roads, a bridge, and esplanade improvements for the purposes of connecting its campus to the adjacent Metro North Glenwood Station. Redeveloping this area will allow for easier access to the Metro North Glenwood Station as well as Grand Central Terminal and the broader surface transportation network. By filling this missing link in transit, access for visitors, residents and businesses will greatly improve. Bringing in future customers and investors will reinvigorate this waterfront area’s economy.

The project will serve as a multi-faceted catalyst for economic growth, creating approximately 1,500 construction jobs and an estimated 700 operations jobs in numerous sectors including production, food, hospitality, retail, service and management. The City of Yonkers’ proposal will create a series of vehicular, pedestrian and bicycle improvements to link the isolated Glenwood Power Plant with the MTA transportation network and therefore improve access for surrounding area residents as well as visitors from as far as the New York Metropolitan area. This project will transform the Yonkers riverfront and the region, and I applaud the City of Yonkers for its foresight. I sincerely hope this application meets with your approval. 

Thank you for your consideration. If you need additional information, please do not hesitate to contact me or my staff.

Sincerely,

Charles E. Schumer

United States Senator

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