16 New projects coming to Downtown Utica

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UTICA, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY-TV) — 16 transformational projects are coming to Utica as part of the $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative Award.

“It’s not just the 10 million dollars it’s the partnership with the private public partnership that we have that will be close to 30 million dollars in investments in our downtown area.” – Robert Palmieri, Mayor of Utica

Part of the award money will also go toward creating an employment center to prepare and attract a diverse workforce, $624,000…pre pandemic workforce development was very important, today it is essential. Far too many people have been displaced from a job they thought would be their forever.” – Kathy Hochul, Lt. Governor of New York

$400,000 will go toward redeveloping Oneida National Bank Building to establish Mohawk Valley’s first commercial kitchen and food incubator.

“This is going to be fabulous. just like the creative arts. You give people who are creative in the culinary arts. They come here they have an incubator, they start their business or a food truck, they get their feet on the ground. All of a sudden they have a clientele, people want to work there then it breeds other upscale restaurants or variety of ethnic restaurants, I’m telling you, this is the beginning.” – Kathy Hochul, Lt. Governor of New York

“The city is exploding and we’re so thankful for the governor and the Lt. Gov for acknowledging that and making sure that 10 million dollars is going to be hitting the streets of Genesse Street.” – Robert Palmieri, Mayor of Utica

Palmieri says you can expect to see some of these projects begin in the next 2 to 3 months.

Projects funded through the initiative: 

Restoration of the Kempf Block into Mixed-used Redevelopment – $750,000: Reactivation of blighted and underutilized buildings in the city’s Commercial Business District to add market-rate residential apartments and commercial space across seven retail storefronts.

Establishing a Business Assistance Fund – $750,000: Establishment of a grant fund for eligible small businesses within the focused area for expansion and improvement projects.

Construction of a Mixed-use Artspace Utica: Affordable Live/Work Artist Housing – $650,000: Construction of a new, four-story, mixed-use building with community/commercial space and affordable live/work units for local artists and their families.

Rehabilitation of the Veterans’ Fitness and Wellness Center – $650,000: Restoration of the locker rooms and parking area of the Veterans’ Fitness and Wellness Center, enhancing a valuable recreational amenity for downtown living and community well-being.

Creation of an Employment Center to Prepare and Attract a Diverse Workforce – $624,000: Creation of an employment center offering culturally and linguistically appropriate training and employment services for diverse populations working in the region.

Renovation of the Macartovin Commercial Space to Attract Businesses to the City’s Commercial Corridor – $600,000: Historic rehabilitation of the Macartovin Building’s vacant first floor to bring commercial space downtown, thereby attracting businesses to the heart of the city’s commercial corridor.

Redevelopment of the Oneida National Bank Building and establishing the Mohawk Valley’s Commercial Kitchen/Food Incubator – $400,000: Conversion of vacant space on the fifth floor of the former Oneida National Bank into the Mohawk Valley’s first commercial kitchen/food Incubator.

Rehabilitation of the New Century Club into Modern Commercial Space – $375,000: Rehabilitation of one of downtown Utica’s most historically significant buildings, the New Century Club, to create new commercial office space.

Upgrades to the Stanley Theater – $340,250: Creation of a more welcoming and accessible interface for the iconic theatre with upgrades to the Genesee Street entrance and the box office department.

Repair of the Washington Street Garage to Expand Parking Downtown – $2,000,000: Repairs to a three-deck downtown parking facility that prioritize recommended improvements to the slab, structure, and stair tower in order to return critical downtown parking space.

Creation of a Munson-Williams Proctor Arts Institute Park – $819,500: Creation of a large public-access park on underutilized institute land in the Oneida Square neighborhood with arts and culture programming.

Expantion of Public Arts to create a Vibrant Arts-themed Corridor – $750,000: Installation and restoration of public art throughout downtown in partnership with local artists. Project elements include a facelift for the Utica Place Garage, repairs to the iconic Sun Mural, and the creation of placemaking activity hubs.

Adaptive Reuse of DeSales Center for Inclusive Community Services – $500,000: Activation of 50,000 square feet of underutilized space to transform the DeSales Building into a more inclusive, accessible community center by installing an elevator and replacing damaged windows.

Activate Liberty Bell Park – $278,350: Conversion of Liberty Bell Park to a year-round, multi-purpose space for outdoor recreation and public events with improved lighting, landscaping, hardscaping, furnishing, and an area for an ice rink during winter.

Improving Outdoor Community Space at The Carol L. Crooms Cultural Activities Center – $111,000: Conversion of two vacant lots into multi-purpose event spaces to complement the community and business programming of the Carol L. Crooms Cultural Activities Center.

Rehabilitation the Utica Public Library Genesee Street Corridor – $101,900: Rehabilitation of sidewalks, stone pillars, and catch basins along the Genesee Street entrance of the Utica Library to help preserve and maintain a landmark civic institution downtown.

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