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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 closest facility in the Southern Tier with table games resides in the basement of SUNY Broome Community College’s Science Building in Binghamton (Broome County). The $300,000 mock casino has a blackjack table, a 14-foot craps table, roulette and a bar. This is the classroom for SUNY Broome’s new casino management program, which recently received State University of New York approval and will serve as the training ground for students eager to break into the casino industry. The curriculum for the 15-credit casino management certificate includes classes on table surveillance and security, casino operations management and a casino internship. The 63-credit Associate in Applied Science degree has two internships, a bartending and beverage management class, and a casino games course, among many others.   (Article Date:   March 15, 2014)

A Tioga County forestry equipment distributor has been awarded a contract worth up to $2.4 million over six years to provide wood chippers to municipalities in Minnesota. Northeast Implement will provide approximately 40 hydraulic-feed wood chippers per year to agencies throughout Minnesota on a state contract. The contract is initially for two years, but could be extended an additional four years. The potential six-year contract will give Northeast Implement an estimated $400,000 boost in sales each year, for a total value of up to $2.4 million.   (Article Date:   March 10, 2014)

The multibillion-dollar Combat Rescue Helicopter (CRH) contract will be awarded in June 2014. The U.S. Air Force moved $430 million from other priorities so the CRH contract can proceed. The vendor most likely to win the contract is the team of Connecticut-based Sikorsky Aircraft and Lockheed Martin. Lockheed’s Owego (Tioga County) workforce would be assigned to handle the new helicopter’s modernized mission systems and other special equipment. The CRH program could create or sustain 200 jobs at the Owego facility, which has approximately 2,600 employees but has laid off 90 employees since August 2013.   (Article Date:   March 4, 2014)

Reported last Release

The new Bill & Melinda Gates Hall recently opened on the Cornell University campus in Ithaca (Tompkins County). The $60 million state-of-the-art facility is designed to foster interdisciplinary research collaborations in Computing and Information Science.  (Article Date:  February 17, 2014)

Binghamton University (Broome County) officials recently announced goals for the next six years. The university wants to attract and retain qualified graduate students. It’s part of a vision to swell BU’s student ranks to 20,000 by 2020. At the center of the plan is the BU 4-1-1 program, which acts as a hands-on supplement to master’s studies. Students would attend four years as undergraduates, and then have one year of combined class work and some type of internship before completing a master’s degree in the final year. BU’s student enrollment has steadily risen to about 16,000, up from 14,000 in 2011. The student population is expected to reach 17,000 in two years.  (Article Date:   January 30, 2014)

Previously Reported

The Greater Binghamton Health Center (Broome County) and Elmira Psychiatric Center (Chemung County) will remain open. The two Southern Tier mental health facilities were slated for closure as early as July 2014. The Binghamton site employs 373 and about 360 are employed at the Elmira center. The Regional Centers of Excellence Plan, which was announced in July 2013, would have consolidated New York’s 24 state psychiatric hospitals into 15 regional centers over three years, while expanding outpatient services. Under that plan, a combined 196 beds at the Binghamton site and the Elmira center would have been closed as soon as summer 2014. This would have forced Southern Tier families to travel to Buffalo, Syracuse or Utica to visit relatives receiving treatment.   (Article Date:   December 19, 2013)

A Kentucky-based outsourcing company will revitalize the dormant portion of the Becton-Dickinson plant in Hancock (Delaware County) to create a call and back-office-operations center that will create an estimated 400 full-time jobs over the next two years. Data Control Group, which has an existing operation in Deposit, will invest $2.8 million in the building that formerly housed the medical products manufacturer.   (Article Date:   November 29, 2013)

The Alstom rail car manufacturing plant in Hornell (Steuben County), which reopened in July 2012, has been adding jobs over the past 18 months due to seven major contracts. The Hornell site is the largest Alstom facility in North America and more than 7,000 metro cars have been built there. The site has increased local employment from 50 in April 2012 to around 300 in October 2013. The company currently has major projects with Boston; Baltimore; Philadelphia; Amtrak; Ottawa; and Montreal.   (Article Date:   November 19, 2013)

The Walsh family, owners of Traditions at the Glen, wants to invest $150 million to build Traditions Resort and Casino (Broome County), featuring 1,200 slot machines, 50 table games, fine dining and high-end retail shops. They join Tioga Downs (Tioga County) and Vista Hospitality Group (Broome County) as entities interested in bidding on a casino license in the region. They estimate the project would create 1,150 new jobs in the area, contribute $50 million in payroll annually to the local economy and churn out $115 million each year in casino revenue. The eligible counties in the Southern Tier region are Broome, Chemung, Schuyler, Seneca, Tioga, Tompkins and Wayne.   (Article Date:   November 14, 2013)

BAE Systems will receive $7 million from the U.S. Army to develop vehicle electronics for the Paladin Integrated Management (PIM) program. The investment is part of a larger contract worth approximately $195 million to produce equipment used by the Army’s Armored Brigade Combat Team. Production of the vehicles will take place in York, PA, and Elgin, OK, with delivery of the first vehicles expected in mid-2015. The contract will not result in any job growth at BAE Systems in Endicott (Broome County), which has 1,250 employees — 230 of whom work for HybriDrive Solutions.   (Article Date:   November 4, 2013)

Vista Hospitality Group, which owns, manages and develops hotels, resorts and commercial real estate, plans to submit a bid for a casino in the Greater Binghamton area. The group believes a new casino in downtown Binghamton (Broome County) would spur economic activity, generate tax revenue and attract more tourists than an expansion of Tioga Downs in Nichols (Tioga County). Tioga Downs, currently the site of a racino, is also submitting a bid to house the Southern Tier’s first full-fledged casino.   (Article Date:   October 26, 2013)

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)

Corning Community College’s first dormitory, Perry Hall, opened in August 2013 housing 200 students. The $16 million building helped close out the college’s master plan for 2008-2013. To change the learning landscape on its main campus, the college plans to undertake an additional $23.27 million capital improvement project. Work will be done on the library, the Commons building, which serves as the student center and cafeteria, and the gym and playing fields. Design work will run through December 2014, while construction will take place from March 2014 through September 2015.   (Article Date:   August 15, 2013)

Roughly 3,000 students will be living in a newly-built residence community this year at Binghamton University in Vestal (Broome County). There are eight new halls that make up a part of the university’s $375 million East Campus Housing project, which began in 2003. Construction began in 2008. The residence halls, along with the Chenango Champlain Collegiate Center, comprise more than one million square feet. It is the largest project ever undertaken by the university. The new dorms sit across from older dorms, and share the same names as some of the old halls. The old halls will be turned into academic buildings and staff offices.   (Article Date:   August 15, 2013)

Construction on a new Vestal Park Rehabilitation and Nursing Center facility is scheduled to start in October 2013 following approval of a $4.4 million tax abatement package. The Broome County IDA’s board unanimously authorized the 10-year payment in lieu of taxes, or PILOT, agreement to help Rockland County-based Upstate SK, LLC, finance the construction of the nursing home in Vestal (Broome County). Since the September 2011 flood ravaged the former 180-bed facility, the Vestal Nursing Center has operated 50 beds at the Greater Binghamton Health Center in Binghamton and 60 at Willow Point Nursing Home in Vestal. The new 148,400-square-foot development will include a 160-bed skilled-nursing facility and a 40-bed assisted-living program. The project will add 155 jobs on top of the 135 expected to be retained, increasing the nursing home’s payroll to $4.57 million per year for the next 10 years. The construction project, estimated to cost roughly $33.7 million, would push the vacant property’s assessed value to $26.6 million.   (Article Date:   July 30, 2013)

Update: The $79.5 million project to rebuild MacArthur Elementary School on the City of Binghamton’s (Broome County) South Side remains on track for completion by September 2015. Almost two years after Tropical Storm Lee destroyed the long-time neighborhood school on Vestal Avenue, architects told Binghamton school board members that demolition could start in October and construction could start in January 2014.   (Article Date:   July 17, 2013)

The company that developed a pocket neighborhood of small, highly energy-efficient houses in the City of Ithaca’s (Tompkins County) Fall Creek neighborhood is planning a much larger, but similar project in the Town of Ithaca. The project by New Earth Living will consist of 36 houses in five clusters, or pocket neighborhoods, in the town’s southwest. It would also have a common house, bike and canoe sheds, vegetable gardens, and a potential forest garden. It would have shared photovoltaic arrays, and houses would have super-insulation and rainwater harvesting. There are also plans for car sharing and car- and bike-pooling using an internal Internet-based reservation and coordination system.   (Article Date:   July 9, 2013)

Update:   The Southern Tier High Technology Incubator is a step closer to fruition as Binghamton University received a $2 million commitment from the U.S. Economic Development Administration. But even with the additional funds, ground will not be broken on the 54,000-square-foot facility until March 2014 — at the earliest. The incubator, a $22 million project, now has $11 million in committed funds: the $2 million preliminary EDA award, $7 million from the Regional Economic Development Council and another $2 million from the Broome County IDA. With $11 million now raised, design is starting on the proposed downtown facility slated to be built on a 2.5-acre downtown Binghamton (Broome County) site. The design phase is expected to take six to eight months, meaning ground will not be broken on the facility until after the winter season.   (Article Date:   July 2, 2013)

Update:   More than 300 students will be housed in the first residence hall on the SUNY Broome Community College campus by the start of the 2014-15 academic year. The $18 million, 18,000 square foot facility will house about 340 students.   (Article Date:   June 25, 2013)

In a long-awaited announcement, Corning Inc. said it will spend $250 million to expand its diesel facility in Erwin (Steuben County) by 94,000 square feet. The plant makes large ceramic substrates and filters for heavy-duty diesel engines. The three-year project is expected to create 250 jobs, if market demand grows as expected. The plan also includes an investment in new heavy-duty diesel finishing operations at Corning’s subsidiary in China, a project that represents the company’s first major diesel capacity investment in Asia.   (Article Date:   April 26, 2013)

Tioga County economic development officials have given the green light to tax breaks for a proposed $52 million expansion at the Tioga Downs Racino, including $5.2 million in tax abatements. The expansion includes a 135-room, six-story hotel, an 85,743-square-foot events center, and a three-story parking garage. Tioga Downs would add 70 employees to its work force and $2.1 million to its payroll within two years of the project’s expected completion date of May 31, 2014.   (Article Date:  March 6, 2013)

A building boom is under way in Tompkins County with 71 new projects that could be finished within two years. The projects could add more than $250 million to county’s assessment rolls by 2015, and add $1.7 million in tax receipts to its coffers. Local governments will also benefit from a boost in property taxes, including school districts, towns and the City of Ithaca.   (Article Date:  March 5, 2013)   Here’s a snapshot of the big projects planned or now under construction:

  • Four hotel projects with about 450 rooms
  • 27 apartment projects with about 2,100 new units
  • 18 mixed-residential-and-commercial projects
  • 516 building lots for residences

There may soon be room for 500 more college students at the apartment complex in University Plaza in Vestal (Broome County) where a local development firm is planning to cash in on Binghamton University’s recent growth. Newman Development Group, the private Vestal-based firm behind the project, recently unveiled its plan for the Metroplex at UP. The project would also make upgrades to the plaza, adding parking, landscaping and other building improvements in addition to the new apartments. Although the project must still go through the site plan review process and gain approval from the town, Newman hopes to start construction in the summer of 2014 and begin renting out the units in the fall 2015 semester.  (Article Date:  February 13, 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)

Site preparation work is scheduled to begin in April 2013 at Watkins Glen High School (Schuyler County), the launch of the school district’s $24.6 million renovation project. Plans call for additions to the high school cafeteria and north wing, where the library will be expanded and five new classrooms and new district offices built. One big project, the conversion of the older swimming pool into a gymnasium for middle school students, will begin in February 2014 and should be finished by the start of the 2014-15 school year. Other work in both buildings will include extensive improvements to the auditoriums, roof repairs and replacement, lighting upgrades, expansion of wireless access, expansion of security camera systems, window replacement, new boilers and plumbing upgrades.   (Article Date:   December 17, 2012)

The former New York State Inebriate Asylum in Binghamton (Broome County) will be transferred to SUNY Upstate Medical University, and will be turned into a medical and health professional education center that will have clinical and classroom space. The building was originally built in 1858, and is on the grounds of the Greater Binghamton Health Center. SUNY Upstate Medical University announced plans in 2008 to re-purpose the building. The first phase of the restoration, which includes all of the exterior work, was funded in the 2008-09 fiscal year by the SUNY system’s capital budget for $12 million.   (Article Date:   September 24, 2012)

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)

The Corning-Painted Post School District in Corning (Steuben County) broke ground on a $97.4 million facilities project. The three-year project includes the expansion and renovation of the East High campus into the new 338,476-square-foot high school, which will open in the fall of 2014 as well as the renovation of the current West High into a combined middle school for about 1,150 students, featuring new classrooms, science labs and computer rooms, along with a new cafeteria.   (Article Date:   June 25, 2012)

The Corning Museum of Glass is planning a $64 million expansion that will include one of the world's largest facilities for glassblowing demonstrations. It's scheduled for completion in 2014. The expansion's preliminary design calls for a new North Wing, featuring light-filled galleries for the museum's collection of contemporary works in glass. The museum's new glassmaking space will be able to accommodate 500 people and offer 360-degree views of the process. The museum attracts some 400,000 visitors annually.   (Article Date:   June 1, 2012)

Railcar manufacturer CAF USA in Elmira Heights (Chemung County) has begun to add staff as work commences on the company’s $298 million contract with Amtrak. The local workforce is expected to grow to 350 at the peak of production.   (Article Date:   January 30, 2012)

Closings and Contractions

New this Release

Nothing of a relatively significantly degree to report

Reported last Release

The Penguin Random House distribution center in Kirkwood (Broome County) will close by June 2015 as part of the newly-formed company’s restructuring. The company is moving work done at Kirkwood and Pittston, PA to facilities in Maryland and Indiana. The closure process is expected to begin by February 2015 and be completed by June 2015. An estimated 300 employees work at the Kirkwood center.   (Article Date:   February 7, 2014)

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)

Previously Reported

The business formerly known as Endicott Interconnect (EI) Technologies is emerging from bankruptcy with a new name -- i3 Electronics, Inc. -- and a new owner -- Integrian Holdings LLC, which is controlled by local businessman Jim Matthews Jr. Integrian submitted the winning bid in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in September 2013 for the right to purchase EI’s assets. Integrian has acknowledged that i3 will need to reduce its workforce, currently at 575, as it focuses on stabilizing and growing the business. However, layoff details have not yet been revealed. EI filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in July 2013, citing $86.9 million in liabilities and approximately $36 million in assets following nearly $100 million in operating losses between 2009 and 2012. Also looming in the background is a $2.5 million incentive from Empire State Development offered in September to the prospective purchaser of EI’s assets, on the condition that they keep the company’s 575 jobs in Broome County.   (Article Date:   November 13, 2013)

New York State will close the Monterey Shock Facility in Schuyler County in July 2014. The facility currently houses 158 inmates, but has a maximum capacity of 300. There are also 124 staff members. The closure plan proposes preventing layoffs by transitioning employees to other facilities.   (Article Date:   July 22, 2013)

A 21st Century Insurance call center in Vestal (Broome County) that employs 225 people will be shuttered in March 2014; just two months shy of the lease expiration. Employees were recently told of the pending closure. About 170 of the 225 customer support personnel will be offered jobs at other call centers around the country. An unspecified number may continue “if they are eligible” in the company’s “Work at Home” program, where they can remain in the region and work remotely for the company. Farmers Insurance of Los Angeles acquired 21st Century from AIG for $1.9 billion in 2009, and has been combining the two companies since. AIG opened the insurance service center in a 69,000-square foot space in 1999. The insurance company’s lease expires on May 31, 2014.   (Article Date:  April 4, 2013)

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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