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Southern Tier Region, Expansions and Contractions

Disclaimer: The information in this file was extracted from statewide newspaper clippings by Labor Department staff. The New York State Department of Labor is not responsible for the accuracy of these statistics unless they are direct quotes from the Department of Labor.

Expansions, Openings and Recalls

New this Release

The State of New York recently awarded $20 million to Binghamton University (BU) to conduct research on flexible technology at the Huron campus in Endicott (Broome County). As part of the Flex-Tech Alliance, BU research staff will focus on cutting-edge bendable circuitry that has uses across virtually all electronic devices. The technology involves printing electronic circuitry on flexible material. Corning Inc., which is teaming with BU, has developed a thin glass material on which the circuitry can be printed, opening up a vast range of new uses for the technology. The project could create up to 200 jobs over the next several years, with a ripple impact of 500 to 1,000 jobs across New York over the next seven to 10 years at companies such as BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin and i3 Electronics. Business Services plans to reach out to Alliance members to assist with their workforce needs. (Article Date: April 6, 2016)

A high-end furniture retailer, Ellis Brothers, will complete a $3.5 million renovation of the former J.C. Penney building in downtown Binghamton (Broome County). Plans call for a 40,000-sq.-ft. renovation of the now-vacant building into a modern furniture showroom and gift shop. There will also be upgrades to the building's exterior, including the installation of large windows across the first and second floors, under the plans. The project will retain 17 employees and create about six new ones. Business Services will reach out to the retailer to assist in their workforce needs. (Article Date: March 24, 2016)

A $1 million agricultural development center with a Taste NY store is headed to Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) in the Town of Dickinson (Broome County). Along with the Taste NY store, the center will include a classroom and a boardroom where farmers, students and other people interested in agriculture can take classes, and certification and training programs. It will also be a place where farmers can get help with business planning and market development. The new agricultural development center is expected to open in November 2016. Business Services will reach out to CCE to assist with their workforce needs. (Article Date: March 24, 2016)

Reported last Release

The owners of Syracuse-based chain restaurant Copper Top Tavern plans to open a location in Vestal (Broome County). Copper Top Taverns has 10 locations across the state. The Vestal restaurant will bring more than 100 jobs to the area, with an anticipated opening is March 2016. (Article Date: March 16, 2016)

Update: More “ready-to-go” projects related to the Southern Tier’s recent Upstate Revitalization Initiative award have been announced:

  • Transform Greater Binghamton (Broome County) Fund: $5 million with streetscape improvement, housing rehabilitation, improvements and some demolitions.
  • SUNY Broome Specialized Technician Training Program: $1.02 million, for metalworking and electronics certification training programs.
  • Lackawanna Train Station renovation in Binghamton (Broome County): $500,000 renovation of the train station.
  • Bates Troy expansion: 12,000-sq.-ft. expansion of production plant in Binghamton (Broome County) for a company that provides laundry for hospitals and nursing homes; new employees will be veterans. $3.5 million in all, consisting of $675,000 URI grant, $2.5 million loan, $675,000 from other state development funds and $349,000 in cash from the company.
  • 7 Hawley St. mixed-use development, Binghamton (Broome County): Residential, parking, retail and commercial area in downtown Binghamton $3.5 million from URI, $3.4 from another state fund, $16.6 million in loans, $202,460 in company cash.
  • An Advanced Rail Technology Center in Hornell (Steuben County), at $5 million, where companies could jointly pursue research.
  • Relocating a fire station in Ithaca's (Tompkins County) prime Collegetown neighborhood to a Cornell University-owned parking lot, at about $1.2 million.
  • Ithaca (Tompkins County) Hummus, is seeking $7 million to $10 million for its own building as it outgrows a rented production facility.

Together these projects are anticipated to create or retain a total of 370 jobs. Business Services is reaching out to all of these businesses to offer assistance in meeting their workforce needs. (Article Date: October 7, 2015)

Previously Reported

Cornell University is moving ahead with plans to replace and expand a graduate student housing development in Ithaca (Tompkins County) with an $80 million project. The existing 170-unit complex with 356 beds is set to become 500 to 600 units with 850 to 975 beds in a mix of townhomes and multi-family apartment buildings on the 13-acre property, according to the development designers. Aiming for approval this year, the project team hopes to begin work in Spring 2017, with an opening date of July 2018. (Article Date: February 12, 2016)

Update: An investment group plans to renovate a large industrial park complex in Kirkwood (Broome County). The first tenant for Link Park is Modern Marketing Concepts and its 328 workers. MMC’s owner is the driving force behind the renovated park. The $17 million project received a combination of state and local government economic development supportive funding totaling $10.3 million. Developers hope the refurbished 28,000-sq.-ft., 46-acre complex will develop into a business incubator. (Article Date: February 11, 2016)

Demolition has begun for a project to expand off-campus student housing and related amenities in Vestal (Broome County). Newman Development Group and American Campus Communities plan to add a 562-bed townhouse community to the University Plaza complex. The development, which will be called Metroplex at UP, consists of 138 townhouse units of four bedrooms each, and two structures with five bedrooms each. The estimate cost of the project is roughly $10 million. The growth in student-housing in the area coincides with Binghamton University’s plan to grow student enrollment to nearly 20,000 from its current 17,000 level. Job creation estimates are unavailable. Business Services typically has little success in assisting construction companies with their hiring needs. (Article Date: December 18, 2015)

Update: The region’s recent win at the Upstate Revitalization Initiative competition will help to fund a health sciences and technology park in Johnson City (Broome County). Binghamton University will co-locate its nursing school with its pharmacy school, creating anchor tenants for the park. Projections from the university suggest 150 jobs will be created directly, 51 jobs will be retained, 200 indirect jobs will arise and 300 jobs will be supported during the construction phase of the projects. Business Services staffs have worked with the university and will assist the institution with its workforce needs. (Article Date: December 16, 2015)

A new senior living center is coming to Owego (Tioga County). Home Leasing is building 62 apartments for seniors. The group broke ground on the $10 million community, Owego Gardens. Apartments are expected to be ready by the end of the summer 2016. Job creation estimates are unavailable. Business Services typically has little success in assisting construction firms with their hiring needs. (Article Date: December 10, 2015)

The Southern Tier received one of three Upstate Revitalization Initiative (URI) grants recently awarded by New York State. The prize brings with it $500 million in funding for economic development projects over the next five years. The Southern Tier plan focuses on: help existing manufacturing companies expand or tap new markets; make urban centers more attractive to young people and businesses; enhance tourism and link attractions to one another; and increase food processing capacity, including craft beverage production. If fully carried out, the Southern Tier REDC estimates the region’s plan would leverage $2.5 billion in private investment from companies and not-for-profit organizations, creating 10,200 jobs and producing an overall economic impact of $3.4 billion in five years. (Article Date: December 10, 2015)

A mixed-use property with about 100 apartments and 8,000 sq.-ft. of commercial space is planned for Binghamton (Broome County). The development, called River Landing, would replace a rundown structure in a high profile city location near the confluence of the Chenango and Susquehanna rivers. Project costs are to be offset by REDC supportive funding. (Article Date: November 25, 2015)

A developer wants to build a combined office and apartment building in Johnson City (Broome County). Oakdale Crossing’s plans call for 28,000-sq.-ft. of office space on two floors of 14,000 sq.-ft. each, and 10 luxury apartments on the third floor, eight with two bedrooms and two with one bedroom. September 2016 is the targeted opening date. The project is tied to the region’s URI award. (Article Date: November 13, 2015)

Can manufacturer Crown Cork and Seal plans to build a production facility in Nichols (Tioga County) with 375,000 sq.-ft. of manufacturing space and 150,000 sq.-ft. of warehouse and office space. The project’s budget is pegged at $132 million with total employment at 164. (Article Date: November 4, 2015)

A dairy product manufacturing plant in Walton (Delaware County) has been saved, along with the facility’s 141-person workforce, as result of an agreement struck between parent company Kraft-Heinz and the state. The company originally considered closing all of its dairy manufacturing plants in the state in an attempt to reduce expenses. Overall, the state has agreed to offer the company an investment incentive up to $20 million over five years — so long as the company also invests $20 million into the remaining plants. The incentive is estimated to preserve/create 940 jobs over the next five years. A fourth plant in Campbell (Steuben County) will be kept open for 12 months to 24 months, and Kraft-Heinz agreed to work with government officials to find a new operator to keep the plant open and retain the jobs there. (Article Date: November 4, 2015)

A groundbreaking was recently held at the site of the expanding casino at Tioga Downs in Nichols (Tioga County). The ceremony follows approval from the state gaming commission for the rights to the fourth, and final, statewide license. The casino expansion is expected to cost an estimated $195 million. Tioga Downs currently has 310 full-time equivalent jobs and projects between 748 and 807 with a full casino. (Article Date: October 30, 2015)

Binghamton University’s Integrated Electronics Engineering Center (IEEC) will continue as a New York State Center for Advanced Technology (CAT) for another 10 years. As a result of the re-designation, the State will provide the IEEC nearly $10 million in funding over the next decade. (Article Date: October 2, 2015)

Erwin (Steuben County) call center operator Sitel is looking to quickly expand its workforce by 300. The new staff is needed to fulfill the company’s growing contract work with an unnamed national satellite television provider. This job expansion should bring the work site back to full staffing levels after experiencing layoffs, of similar size, early in 2014. Based on industry staffing pattern data, most of the jobs are likely to involve customer service and bill/account collection. (Article Date: September 22, 2015)

Alstom received a $2.5 billion contract from Amtrak to build the next generation of high-speed Acela trains, at the company's facility in Hornell (Steuben County). The contract is expected to result in 400 new jobs at the facility and 350 indirect supply chain jobs throughout the region, according to an Alstom representative. The location currently employs 500, approximately. Based on industry staffing pattern data, most of the jobs are likely to involve assembly, inspection, welding and painting. (Article Date: September 21, 2015)

DeMet’s Candy in Big Flats (Chemung County) is in the early planning stages of a potential 2016 expansion. The candy manufacturer has experienced notable sales growth in its chocolate-and yogurt-covered treats (Turtles and Flipz). An estimated 70 new jobs are projected as a result of the roughly $41 million facility and equipment expansion. The project is expected to be completed sometime in 2017. (Article Date: September 15, 2015)

Modern Marketing Concepts (MMC) plans to expand its footprint in Kirkwood (Broome County) and triple its local workforce over the next five years. The company is purchasing and extensively renovating a 436,000-sq.-ft. complex close to its existing location. The project is expected to cost the company approximately $17 million. Financing includes a $5 million grant from Empire State Development, a $5 million Job Development Authority loan and a $4.5 million loan from the Broome County IDA. By 2020, MMC expects to grow its workforce to 900 from the current level or 320. (Article Date: August 4, 2015)

A $29 million redevelopment is planned for two vacant industrial buildings in Johnson City (Broome County). The Century Sunrise Redevelopment project will include 104 residential units, ranging from one- to three-bedroom energy efficient, green-built and LEED-certified apartments and a 4,000- to 8,000-sq.-ft. restaurant facility. The site is close to the future home of Binghamton University’s $60-million School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences. The project is expected to create 120 temporary construction jobs, and generate about 20 permanent positions. Construction is projected to start in summer 2016, and should take 18 to 22 months to complete. (Article Date: July 30, 2015)

Alfred Weissman Real Estate hopes to expand its student apartment complex in Binghamton (Broome County). The $15 million expansion project will add some 40 units to the existing complex. Currently, the building houses about 290 residents. (Article Date: July 8, 2015)

Plans for IncubatorWorks were unveiled recently in the vacant Schweizer-Sikorsky aircraft building in Big Flats (Chemung County) that will provide flexible space where manufacturing-based businesses can grow. The plan builds on the Southern Tier Startup Alliance, an organization of business incubators that provides support to entrepreneurs starting and growing businesses. It is backed by a partnership among Binghamton University, Corning Enterprises and Cornell University. Tax advantages through the Hot Spot and Start-Up New York programs will be drawn upon as IncubatorWorks is a designated Start-Up New York site in partnership with Corning Community College. The target for completion is August 2016. (Article Date: June 30, 2015)

The Penguin Random House facility in Kirkwood (Broome County) will become a new distribution facility. An affiliate of Equilibrium Equities bought the Kirkwood facility and will rebrand the location as a multi-tenant distribution facility called Triumph Business Center. Penguin Random House announced in February 2014 that it would shut down its Kirkwood operation. Layoffs began this past January affecting 286 people. While the purchase will not immediately create jobs, the property is being upgraded with an eventual goal of generating jobs in the future. (Article Date: May 18, 2015)

The Lincoln Gardens housing development project received $1.756 million from New York State. The project revolves around the adaptive reuse of the vacant, historic Lincoln Elementary School in Hornell (Steuben County). The proposed scope of work will create 25 one-and two-bedroom apartments for seniors 55+, including four units for persons with a physical disability or traumatic brain injury. (Article Date: May 13, 2015)

Two companies plan to create 39 jobs and invest $540,000 over the next five years while residing in tax-free zones at Binghamton University. Baceapp Corp. and LightSpin Technologies Inc., which will move to the Engineering and Science Building at Binghamton University’s campus in Vestal (Broome County), were two of the 17 companies unveiled recently as the newest participants in Start-Up NY, a program that offers no taxes for 10 years in locations near or on college campuses. (Article Date: April 27, 2015)

Kirkwood-based (Broome County) Willow Run Foods Inc. is looking to hire 55 workers, including 20 people for its warehouse, 25 professional drivers and driver-trainees and 10 driver-helpers. Willow Run is gearing up to start its five-year, $375 million deal with Five Guys Burgers and Fries in May . Willow Run, an employee-owned company specializing in the distribution of casual dining and fast-food systems, has annual sales approaching $500 million. The company has 390 employees. Business Services is working with the company. (Article Date: April 24, 2015)

Norwich Pharmaceuticals, a provider of contract manufacturing and clinical research services for the pharmaceutical industry, recently broke ground on a $26 million expansion that will add 26,000 sq. ft. to its facility in Chenango County. The expansion, funded by Norwich Pharmaceuticals’ parent company, Alvogen, will include the acquisition and installation of new processing equipment focused on future production needs. The entire expansion is scheduled to take 18 months, with a fall 2016 ribbon cutting planned. Norwich Pharmaceuticals has 277 employees, with an annual payroll of $25 million. No new jobs are expected as a result of the expansion. (Article Date: April 15, 2015)

Southern Tier counties are eligible for $30 million in state money for agricultural economic development. Under the plan, eligible applicants that manage farm operations can apply for grants up to $100,000. Project costs would be funded 75 percent by the state and 25 percent by the applicant. Eligible costs include on-farm construction projects, as well as renovation of existing facilities. (Article Date: March 18, 2015)

State officials recently unveiled a $20 million competitive fund to lure green jobs to the Southern Tier. The competition in the Southern Tier should help create synergy with Binghamton University in Vestal (Broome County), which broke ground on a $70 million Smart Energy Research and Development Facility in summer 2014. (Article Date: January 19, 2015)

The developers behind the $13 million housing project slated for Glendale Drive in Endicott (Broome County) are aiming to address a deficit in affordable housing that has faced the area since the 2011 flood damaged hundreds of homes. The Cardinal Cove Apartments project, backed by $7.2 million in state funding, will give preference in occupancy to residents who lost their homes in the floods of 2006 and 2011. There will be income requirements for residents of the development. (Article Date: January 6, 2015)

A kosher dairy plant is expected to open in Conklin (Broome County) at the site of a former HP Hood factory. Mountain Fresh Dairy anticipates hiring 85 to 90 employees over the next 2½ years, many of whom are expected to be former HP Hood workers who lost their jobs in mid-2012. (Article Date: November 19, 2014)

The Binghamton (Broome County) Gateway Homes project will receive more than $7 million in state aid to help rebuild after tropical storms in 2011. The Front Street project will receive the money to rehabilitate 11 existing buildings, as well as, to build one three-story mixed-use building. In all, the project will include 37 apartments. The state is providing about $518,000 in low-income housing tax credits and $7 million through its Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery program. (Article Date: October 30, 2014)

Kirkwood-based (Broome County) Willow Run Foods Inc. reached an eight-year deal worth $280 million with Checkers Drive-In Restaurants Inc., the Tampa, FL-headquartered operator of the Checkers and Rally’s hamburger chains. The company will add about 25 employees, mainly professional drivers and warehouse personnel, because of the deal. (Article Date: October 29, 2014)

The U.S. Department of Defense recently awarded Lockheed Martin in Owego (Tioga County) an $8.6 million contract for transmitter receivers. It is a three-year base contract with no option periods. The work is expected to be completed by January 2017. (Article Date: October 14, 2014)

Update: Binghamton University's $60 million planned pharmacy school will be built near downtown Johnson City (Broome County). Construction should start in Spring 2015, and the school is expected to officially open in early 2018. The first classes in the pharmacy program will likely be offered in Fall 2017. The school will go up in a tax-free Start-Up NY zone, creating an incentive for research pharmaceutical companies and other start-ups to move to the area. The school is expected to partner with large health care provider UHS, as well as the pharmaceutical research companies that move into the area surrounding it. (Article Date: September 25, 2014)

Update: With $19 million in funding, a groundbreaking for the Southern Tier High Technology Incubator was recently held in Binghamton (Broome County). The facility is intended to link university research to the commercial marketplace while helping to launch and support new businesses, also recently got a financial boost. The funds will help construct and equip the SUNY Bridge to Entrepreneurial Excellence (SUNY-BEE) at the incubator. (Article Date: September 16, 2014)

Update: Binghamton University broke ground on its Smart Energy Research and Development Facility in Vestal (Broome County). The project is expected to create hundreds of jobs and serve as a state-of-the-art research hub for the development of energy-efficient technologies. The new $70 million, 114,000-square-foot facility is scheduled for completion in 2017 and is a direct result of the NYSUNY 2020 initiative. (Article Date: August 27, 2014)

Update: The team of Lockheed Martin and Sikorsky Aircraft has received a $1.28 billion contract to build a new fleet of combat rescue helicopters. Connecticut-based Sikorsky will provide the helicopters; Lockheed Martin in Owego (Tioga County) will handle the new helicopter’s modernized mission systems and other special equipment. The contract is the first step in eventually providing 112 combat rescue helicopters with a potential value of about $7.9 billion. Work is expected to be completed by June 2029. (Article Date: June 26, 2014)

Binghamton University (BU) received one of the largest research grants in its history. A $12.8 million, four-year grant through the U.S. Department of Energy will help establish the Northeast Center for Chemical Energy Storage. Much of the work will be done in BU’s Center of Excellence building, though it will span several of the science buildings on its Vestal (Broome County) campus. BU’s partner institutions involved in this research include Rutgers University, MIT and Cambridge University, among others. (Article Date: June 16, 2014)

CAF USA received a $118 million contract to manufacture 24 railcars for the City of Boston. Nearly half of the funding is coming from federal sources. CAF will produce the shells and frames for the cars at its facility in Spain. Final assembly and testing will occur at CAF’s plant in Chemung County. Delivery will take place between the end of 2017 and 2018. The company has grown to 800 employees locally in a very short time. New buildings have been erected at the site to accommodate work on multiple light rail vehicle projects at one time — Kansas City, Cincinnati, Houston, and now Boston. (Article Date: June 10, 2014)

An Ithaca (Tompkins County) firm that uses 3D printing technology developed at Cornell University to produce precision metal and plastic components will be the first StartUp NY business in Tompkins County. Launched in January 2014, Incodema3D is an offshoot of Ithaca-based Incodema, a rapid metal prototyping firm founded in 2001. The company is looking to expand into additive manufacturing, which is essentially a form of 3D printing used to create precision metal components. Incodema3D has 10 employees, and the company projects that number could double annually for the next four to five years. (Article Date: June 4, 2014)

Update: The team of Lockheed Martin and Sikorsky Aircraft won the $1.24 billion contract to build a new fleet of presidential helicopters. Connecticut-based Sikorsky will produce the helicopters, and Lockheed will install the integrated communications and mission systems on the new choppers. The program is expected to create or sustain 200 jobs at its Owego facility, which has approximately 2,600 employees. (Article Date: May 7, 2014)

The Cornell High Energy Synchrotron Source (CHESS) Lab will receive $100 million in funding from the National Science Foundation over the next five years. The CHESS facility, which is one of five high-energy synchrotron x-ray sources in the world and one of only two in the U.S., provides synchrotron x-ray capabilities to investigators in all fields of science and engineering. The CHESS award supports more than 130 Cornell employees in Ithaca (Tompkins County), eight graduate students and three postdoctoral associates. (Article Date: April 21, 2014)

Cornell University is planning a $63 million upgrade to its College of Veterinary Medicine in Ithaca (Tompkins County). The Weiss/Manfredi architectural firm of New York City will design the project. Construction is scheduled to begin in summer 2014 and conclude in 2017. The expanded facilities will allow the veterinary college to boost its enrollment from 102 students per class year to 120, or 480 students in total. The vet school expansion is one of several major construction projects under way at the university’s Ithaca campus.   (Article Date:   October 1, 2013)

Binghamton University will spend at least $184 million over the next five years on multiple construction and renovation projects in and around its Vestal (Broome County) campus. Among the projects: a $37 million Center of Excellence, which is nearing the end of the first construction phase; a $70 million Smart Energy Research and Development facility, currently in the planning stage; and a $21 million project to renovate two former dormitories into office and other space, which is expected to begin in early 2013. BU also plans to add classrooms, offices, food service facilities and laboratories.  (Article Date:  January 24, 2013)

Binghamton University’s NYSUNY 2020 challenge grant, which includes the development of a $70 million Smart Energy Center that will help revitalize the Southern Tier economy and create more than 840 university and private sector jobs, has been approved. Under the plan, Binghamton University will hire new researchers and faculty, expand its academic offerings and facilities, foster public/private research partnerships, and expand technology development in high-tech fields. In addition to creating the Smart Energy Center, new tuition revenue will allow Binghamton University to increase enrollment by 2,000 students from 2012 to 2016 and hire 150 new faculty members.   (Article Date:   August 8, 2012)

Closings and Contractions

New this Release

Nothing Active or Ongoing of Relatively Significant Degree to Report

Reported last Release

Nothing Active or Ongoing of Relatively Significant Degree to Report

Previously Reported

Norwich Aero Products, which operates in a 57,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Norwich (Chenango County), is closing in early 2015. Parent company Esterline Corp., a Bellevue, Washington-based manufacturer serving global aerospace and defense markets, is moving its U.S. production to Mexico. Some administrative functions will move from Norwich to Esterline’s sister company in California. A total of 120 local employees are affected. (Article Date: January 31, 2014)

Labor Disputes

New this month

Nothing to report.

Reported last Month

Nothing to report.

Previously Reported

Nothing to report.



This report contains information derived from media releases throughout the Southern Tier Region. Information sources include, but are not limited to:

  • Action News (WBNG TV)
  • FOX 40 (WICZ TV)
  • Binghamton Press & Sun Bulletin
  • News Channel 34 (WIVT/WBGH TV)
  • The Canisteo Valley News
  • The Cooperstown Crier
  • The Cornell Daily Sun
  • The Corning Leader
  • The Daily Star (Otsego County)
  • The Elmira Star Gazette
  • The Evening Sun (Chenango County)
  • The Greater Binghamton Business Journal
  • The Hornell Evening Tribune
  • The Ithaca Journal
  • The Ithaca Times
  • The Lansing Star
  • The Observer, Review & Express
  • The Odessa File (Schuyler County)
  • The Steuben Courier
  • YNN News - Binghamton/Oneonta
  • YNN News - Elmira/Corning
  • YNN News - Ithaca/Cortland
  • WENY TV News

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