Local DRI committee votes on list of 20 projects


The local Downtown Revitalization Initiative committee voted yesterday morning on whether to recommend a list of 20 projects to New York State officials who will eventually decide which ones will receive a slice of the $10 million grant awarded to the city in September 2018.

Although the results of the vote will not be made public until next week, Mayor Michael Villa, who co-chaired the committee, said after the meeting that he believes the list reflects the consensus of the committee.

Click on any image below for a visual and brief description of each project. All photos are from the Amsterdam DRI project packet except as noted. (Scroll down on each image to see description)

The total cost of all projects on the list is $29 million and will require a total of $15.2 million in DRI grant funds. Co-chair Dustin Swanger, president of Fulton Montgomery Community College, stressed that the state will make the final choice as to which projects will be funded. That decision is expected to be announced by the state in the summer of this year.

Project Name Total Project Cost DRI request
Pedestrian Connector to MVGO Bridge $5.3 million $3.3 million
Chuctanunda Creek Trail $342,300 $288,728
Public realm enhancements at Chalmers Lofts $750,000 $522,000
X-Squad waterski business relocation $60,000 $60,000
Partial Route 5 removal $547,087 $547,087
Downtown entry gateway $1 million $1 million
Community dog park & mid-block connector $324,000 $324,000
Relocation of skate park $93,000 $93,000
Bridge Street utility pole removal $1.25 million $939,000
Bridge Street & Main Street Enhancements $350,000 $350,000
Wayfinding, signage, art & marketing $500,000 $500,000
Design guidelines $50,000 $50,000
Downtown improvement fund $1.2 million $600,000
Chalmers Mills Lofts banquet facility $3 million $500,000
Amsterdam Free Library $4.3 million $1.8 million
Community & Recreation Center $6 million $2.5 million
Southside parking $500,000 $500,000
Former Key Bank building rennovations $2.5 million $1 million
Sharpshooters rooftop bar $225,000 $90,000
Sweet Canal Shop restoration $688,120 $275,000

Six other projects were identified by the committee as worthy of including in the final strategic investment plan, but were not being considered for funding from the DRI grant: the relocation of the train station to a multi-modal transportation hub, a culinary incubator, “Celebrating our Waterways” lighting and creek trailhead park, converting downtown streets back to a traditional “grid” layout, renovations to 20-22 Main Street, and a marina & ferry service on the south side.

A summary of the strategic investment plan will be presented at the third and final public engagement meeting which will be held on March 20 from 6pm to 8pm at Amsterdam City Hall.

Tim Becker

Tim Becker is the owner of Anthem Websites Inc. which publishes The Compass. He serves as both editor and a writer.