DOBBS FERRY, N.Y. – Westchester County is getting its own stimulus package from the state to spark growth in the county's biotech and housing industries.
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that the state has awarded $67 million to the Mid-Hudson Regional Economic Development Council, with more than $38 million of that going towards projects in Westchester to help stimulate economic growth and create jobs.
In Westchester, $4 million of the award will go towards the development of New York Medical College’s Biotech Incubator Center for Advanced Research.
“Biotech has been identified as one of the major growing clusters of industry for the future workforce for Westchester County and for the region,” said Marsha Gordon, president and CEO of the Business Council of Westchester.
The money awarded will be the start of new opportunities for research in Westchester according to Robert Amler, Vice President for Government Affairs and Dean of the School of Health Sciences and Practice at New York Medical College.
“It gives the opportunity for some of our brightest scientists, not just ours at the New York Medical College, but also outside to come to the facility when it’s finished and develop some of their new discoveries,” Amler said.
Amler also described the Incubator center as “one of the best job creators that has ever been around” because of all the workers it will bring with it along with new jobs that will be created as a result.
“We call it an incubator because it’s a place where young things can grow and in this case the young things are young ideas and young projects,” Amler said. “It’s where you really get the growth and piggybacking of ideas, that’s where great discoveries are made.”
Money from the award will also go towards housing initiatives in various areas of Westchester.
“It will enable four housing developments to proceed that are greatly needed in this county,” said Rose Noonan, executive director of the Housing Action Council.
Housing projects that have been in the works for over a year will now be able to proceed including a plan in to convert a former school building into an affordable housing unit in Yonkers, which received $29.6 million according to Noonan.
“It will be money that will be combined with conventional financing and also funding from Westchester County in order to develop the projects which will be affordable to families whose incomes are low and moderate,” Noonan said.
Other projects that will be funded by the award, according to Gordan, are a fishing pier at Waterfront Park in Dobbs Ferry, green projects at the St. Joseph’s Riverside Hospital, training programs and arts and culture developments at Tarrytown Music Hall. There will also be funding for new construction of 10 single family town house condominiums in Armonk and North Castle and 14 residential condominium units in mixed used development in Briarcliff Manor according to Gordon.