Local officials expect to hear the announcement of the final awards in Penn Yan’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative grant (DRI) from Gov.Andrew Cuomo’s office any day now. In the previous two weeks, the DRIs for the other recipients, Lockport, Auburn, Brooklyn, and Islip, were announced, leaving Penn Yan on tenterhooks.
Last summer, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul came to Penn Yan to announce that the village had been selected to receive $10 million in funding to transform the village’s downtown.
In March, the Local Planning Committee for the Downtown Revitalization Initiative completed its recommendations for $15 million in funding for projects totaling $24.6 million, to state officials for a final decision. The final state recommendations for spending $9.7 million of the total $10 million award ($300,000 was earmarked for the committee work and consultant fees) have been anticipated all summer.
From the time the local committee began working with consultants, around 1,500 people attended meetings and participated in surveys as part of the process to finalize the recommendations. Applications were submitted for 40 projects seeking almost $32 million in funding in December. Those original applications included plans for 75 apartments, 18 condominiums, new restaurants, 19 new or improved commerical spaces along with improvements to parks, trails, streetscapes, signage, and public conveniences.
The final list of requests submitted to the state included the following. The dollar figure is total cost of the project for the Sampson Theatre and Milly’s Pantry only. Other projects requested partial funding only:
‒ Sampson Theatre, $3.75 million
‒ New Knapp on Main, $1.575 million
‒ Struble’s Arcade, $1.485 million
‒ Downtown Parks & Trails, $2.9 million
‒ Wagener & Water Street Improvements, $1.5 million
‒ Maiden Lane & Main Street Improvements, $393,907
‒ Water Street Townhomes, $1 million
‒ Belknap, $329,000
‒ Laurentide Inn, $260,000
‒ Milly’s Pantry, $521,200
‒ 126 Main Street, $150,000
‒ Birkett Commercial Buildout, $180,000
‒ Little Elm, $200,000
‒ Building Improvement Fund, $600,000
‒ Village Bakery, $63,500
More than half, 57% of the funding is being requested for cultural/recreational/public use, while 23% is sought for mixed use, 8% for commercial, 8% for residential, and 4% for the building improvement fund.
The other DRI award winners were announced in the previous two weeks, and many of the award winners bear marked resemblances to the projects recommended in Penn Yan.
• July 26, 10 projects for Lockport
• July 30, 13 projects for downtown Auburn
• Aug. 1, 6 projects for Downtown Brooklyn
• Aug. 1, 7 projects for Central Islip