Excitement is building in Upstate and Central New York as a new cargo distribution center could lead to the creation of more than 2,000 jobs.
According to Syracuse.com, details of the potential economic boon were released Wednesday at a meeting of the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council.
“It’s exciting for New York,” said Zelko Kirincich, executive director and CEO of the Port of Oswego Authority, which would operate the facility. “It’s a need for the entire state. It will serve our industry, our exporters and our importers.”
Cargo shipping is big business, with over 17 million shipping containers in circulation globally. The Economic Development Council hopes to capitalize on the unwavering success of the industry as they continue to build for the future.
The project is among those included in the Council’s application to Gov. Andrew Cuomo as a part of the $1.5 billion Upstate Revitalization Initiative.
According to the Rochester Business Journal, the Initiative, which will be submitted to the state for approval by Oct. 5, was established to create jobs, increase regional wealth, attract private investment, and reduce poverty in the region.
The Economic Development Council will give three “winning” regions about $130 million this year, in addition to receiving $100 million in Upstate Revitalization Initiative funding.
The potential cargo shipping facility would be built on a vacant, 225-acre site in the Jamesville area outside of Syracuse.
It would accept shipping containers transported by railroad from the Port of New York and New Jersey. Upon arrival, the containers would be taken off and loaded onto trucks for distribution throughout the Northeast and Canada.
Robert Simpson, co-chairman of the Economic Development Council, noted that the site’s location is just a couple of miles from an area with high poverty rates. He considers it to be a great potential source of employment for Central New Yorkers who need it the most.
In addition to the shipping facility, Syracuse is taking other steps to secure funding from the Initiative.
Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul announced a $100,000 state grant for a program that will provide transportation from areas of Syracuse with high poverty rates to places of employment.