Governor Andrew Cuomo Announces 2021 Agenda to Improve New York State Infrastructure

Rendering of the new Penn Station - Office of Governor Andrew M CuomoRendering of the new Penn Station - Office of Governor Andrew M Cuomo

Governor Andrew Cuomo this week unveiled a multi-billion dollar initiative to revitalize and rebuild infrastructure across New York State. Entitled “Reimagine | Rebuild | Renew,” the 2021 agenda is touted as the largest state infrastructure plan in the country and sets in motion the improvement of state roadways, public transportation, airports, and large swaths of Midtown, Manhattan.

“Altogether we are expanding our infrastructure plan to invest $306 billion in the future of New York,” said Governor Cuomo in his 11th State of the State Address. “That’s not just the largest infrastructure plan in New York history. It’s the largest, most ambitious plan put forward by any state in the nation.”

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo delivers day four of his 2021 State of the State Address in the War Room at the state Capitol - Photo by Darren McGee- Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo delivers day four of his 2021 State of the State Address in the War Room at the state Capitol – Photo by Darren McGee- Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Following the opening of the $1.6 billion Moynihan Train Hall and proposals to link the station with High Line Park, the Governor’s new agenda calls for the creation of new public outdoor spaces, affordable housing, improved public transit and pedestrian connections, and is expected to facilitate the development of commercial and affordable housing properties in Midtown West.

Specific plans for the area include a sleek redesign of the hulking Port Authority Bus Terminal, an end-to-end reconstruction of Penn Station that will increase train capacity by 40 percent and add up to eight new tracks, and the construction of 14 new buildings that will yield more than 20 million square feet of retail, commercial, and residential development. The latter is expected to yield up to 1,400 units of affordable housing.

Additional facets of the Midtown West agenda include the continuation of a $1.5 billion expansion of the Javits Center and a new public outdoor recreation area at Pier 76 located across from the convention center along the Hudson River.

Portions of the agenda focused on Manhattan comes with a $51 billion price tag but are also expected to create 196,000 jobs in the process.

Rendering of the new Port Authority Bus Terminal - Office of Governor Andrew M Cuomo

Rendering of the new Port Authority Bus Terminal – Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Renderings of the new Penn Station - Office of Governor Andrew M Cuomo

Renderings of the new Penn Station – Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Rendering of Pier 76 - Office of Governor Andrew M Cuomo

Rendering of Pier 76 – Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

The most surprising announcement is the opening of the 150-acre LEGOLAND theme park in Goshen, Orange County. The $420 million investment is envisioned as a draw for more tourists to visit the Hudson Valley area after the pandemic.

“Building new projects enhances day-to-day life,” said Governor Cuomo. “Seeing progress lifts people’s spirits. And building with bricks and mortar also builds public optimism and confidence.”

To help extend that confidence to New York’s aging airports, the agenda will continue ongoing transformations of John F. Kennedy and LaGuardia Airports, in addition to a $100 million investment in the enhancement of security checkpoints, existing terminals, boarding concourses, concession areas, and the installation of contact-free technology across multiple Upstate New York airports.

The beleaguered MTA and New York City’s mass transit system is also a major focus of the 2021 agenda. This includes recommencement of the years off-track Second Avenue Subway Extension to lengthen the subway line from 96th Street to 125th Street. Additional items on the MTA’s punch list include comprehensive tunnel and track repairs throughout the system, signal modernization, improved ADA accessibility, and thousands of new buses and train cars.

Similar upgrades will be completed for the Long Island Rail Road including the installation of a third track along a 9.8-mile stretch between Floral Park and Hicksville, Long Island. The $2.6 billion project also includes the construction of new parking garages, renovated stations, new and renovated bridges, and updated tracks and signals.

For New York State’s health sector, the agenda will help Binghamton University complete its 13-acre Health Sciences Campus which includes a new school of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, the Decker College of Nursing and Health Sciences, and more. The New Mohawk Valley Health System Hospital in Utica will also be able to complete its $548 million state-of-the-art hospital set to be open by 2023.

The final and largest component of the 2021 agenda will expedite upgrades to highways, roads, and bridges across the state. This includes a $1.7 billion upgrade to the Bruckner Expressway, a $150 million improvement project for Interstate 390 and 490 in Monroe County, and replacement of the Syracuse 1-81 Viaduct to name a few projects. Effected bridges will include the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge, the Buffalo Skyway, and conversion of the underutilized Albany Skyway into an outdoor park.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo delivers his 2021 State of the State Address-Day 4 in the War Room at the State Capitol - Photo by Mike Groll_Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo delivers his 2021 State of the State Address-Day 4 in the War Room at the State Capitol – Photo by Mike Groll. Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

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38 Comments on "Governor Andrew Cuomo Announces 2021 Agenda to Improve New York State Infrastructure"

  1. David in Bushwick | January 16, 2021 at 9:13 am | Reply

    Only 1,400 new affordable housing units? That’s a fraction of what is needed. And if Cuomo is really serious about enhancing day-to-day life for New Yorkers, how about finally addressing the thousands of homeless people, many with psychological challenges, who are forced to beg and sleep outside every night? Screw Legoland Park and a connection to the HIghline. Vanity projects don’t directly help New Yorkers.

    • Very true.

    • Yes David, what you say is true –most especially in a pandemic, in a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic that puts many more New Yorkers at risk of eviction, poverty, hunger & hopelessness. No matter how some of us feel in terms of being innately secure & superior to others, there but for fortune go you and I. For your arrogance-tinged crap smells just as sweet as theirs, and misfortune & ruin can strike anyone without warning. The true measure of a society, of a community, and yes, of a man or woman, is how the more fortunate treat the least of these. For those priorities reveal both a society’s heart, and an individual’s heart, or the lack of one. In this time of turmoi;, suffering & grief, let’s emphasize the heart in the “I heart New York” motto. For in so doing the lasting social rewards that we will reap will far outnumber the immediate financial costs.

  2. With all the money and people fleeing New York State how is King Como going to pay for this

    • Hey Gov, I thought New York was pleading for more money from the Federal govt? Live within your means.

      • JR: Living within ”Within your means” might be a lot easier if the Feds did not tale much more from NYS than we give them in taxes. Record low interest rates are the time to think big for the future, and to secure the founations for a better future. And when tax revenues dry up in a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic, living within your absolutely menas and requires and demands financial assistance from the federal government — that same governmnet that conservatives want “to drown in a bathtub”.

        • payments via Joe Biden via taxpayers from the rest of the country. Absolutely disgracecul and corrupt politics

  3. Just who is going to live, work, or do business, in this new “infrastructure,” now that the politicians have chased workers…and a lot of other people…out of the city? NYC newspapers are now doing editorials and opinion pieces about the doomed future of NY, with the drop in NYC’s population by almost a quarter of a million people highlighted, and the city’s unemployment number around 12% (equal to about 960,000 people). 66% of NYC’s restaurants and bars have closed PERMANENTLY, twice the percentage originally projected.

    Broadway….forgetaboutit. Broadway expected to be back by May, but Fauci is saying that “masks” and “distancing” will continue well into 2022, DESPITE the vaccine, and Biden is talking “nationwide shutdown.”

    New “infrastructure” is the least of what NYC needs right now.

    • Jim, I understand your anger and frustration, but blame this terrible & unpredictable VIRUS, and not “politicians” such as Cuomo and DeBlasio, or Dr, Fauci, or least of all Joe Biden. Businesses will eventually come back in some form, and New York City itself will come back, hopefully better than ever. But the lives we lost can never be restored, and we can be thankful for the lives we SAVED by taking measures such as lockdowns, mask-wearing and social distancing. Better infrastructure for that New New York, and the jobs it wil create, are part of what is needed. But we need to do a lot more, and hopefully that”politician” named Joe Biden (with the help of Brooklyn born Chuck Schumer) will give us the resources we desperately need. This is not the time to “drown government in a bathtub”. It is time to realize how important good government is in securing a better future for all of us.

      • Concerned Citizen | January 16, 2021 at 9:58 pm | Reply

        And right here my friends is what denial looks like. Stan, please do some research that doesn’t involve sitting in front of the TV watching CNN. There wasn’t a bit of truth in anything that you said. Get your head out of the sand.

      • “we can be thankful for the lives we SAVED by taking measures such as lockdowns, mask-wearing and social distancing.”

        Yeah, that would be almost none. None of that works. We KNOW it doesn’t work. Yet we persist regardless of the facts. Far more people will die and have their lives destroyed from the utterly pointless lockdowns than ever died of this glorified flu outbreak.

  4. Donica Streeter | January 16, 2021 at 10:29 am | Reply

    I agree there are homeless families in dire need,mothers and fathers out of work,babysitters are still a necessity for parents to work…the pandemic has DESTROYED the whole system of working class Americans are being demolished!

    • Hey Donica, it’s not like “the system” was working for the bottom half of America before the pandemic. This pandemic will provide even more excuses & opportunities for the haves, in a booming & unhinged from reality stock market, to pay even less to the serfs who will serve and service them in the future. A society determines who will be rewarded and how. We need to make those rewards more equitable, for everyone’s sake …before it’s too late.

  5. I’m 72 y/o and a retired NY trial lawyer. Although I no longer live in the City, I’ve lived a lifetime and can offer some perspective. The City during my lifetime has gone to the depths and back to the heights. It takes time and political will. Now is the time for investiment because the cost of money over the long term to the government is essentially zero, or even in the negative. It’s not a choice, but a necessity. New York is the only “World City” in the United States and New York State is a leader in education and the sciences. These are the magnets that will continue to attracked talent from our country and the world.

  6. I really don’t have any problems with these projects. They all sound great actually.
    But, all these projects are just “wants,” and I don’t see any “needs” with these plans. True, upgrades to transportation and infrastructure, or even Pier 76 and LEGOLAND, are really nice, but do we really need it?
    I think an affordable housing megaproject is what we need. And 1,400 are REALLY not going to cut it. Yes, this is New York City, and it is expensive, and rightfully so. This ultimately is one of the most important and most famous cities in the world. It’s The City That Never Sleeps afterall, because of its great opportunities and environment. So with that, I think we must set aside some more land for the less fortunate who see New York City as a great opportunity in life, not a playground for the rich.
    But, that’s just my opinion, and I believe Governor Cuomo’s plans look very promising nevertheless. Build baby build!

  7. How many of these infrastructure improvements will be for other than nyc and if they are marginally for nyc Will the rest of the state once again be forced to finance the needs of a city they can’t afford to stay in or have a public infastructre to reasonably get to

    • Tsk tsk Alan, New York City is the economic engine og New York Stat. lest you forget. The Feds tahe MUCh More from NYS i taxes than we get back. Aim your barbs at THAT unfair system instead.

  8. When will people wake up and realize that public money only falsely stimulates the economy especially in such a degree as these projects. This is only going to raise the tax rates in an already broke state with a dwindling tax base. These tax burdens hit everyone statewide do you think people in upstate ny want this? Also coming from someone in the construction industry that has worked on state projects, the project costs usually double or triple when the state is involved due to an over abundance of state workers involved trying to somehow justify their salaries. As well as an arrogance at the state level that refuses to listen to reason and trust those of us who do this work for a living. The pure headache of working with the state drives up cost. Maybe the federal government will bail us out and put the tax burden on other states that can balance their budgets, seems fair to me.

  9. Invest ? Government doesn’t invest. It spends tax dollars.

  10. I give kudos to the governor and his administration for not giving up on the city and NYS but thinking long term. Over time Manhattan will return to being a major financial and cultural mecca, and by creating jobs to revitalize infrastructure he is taking a much needed major step in creating jobs for many of those who will need an opportunity after the devastation of COVID-19.

  11. I agree with Allen, I’ve lived in WNY for 53 yrs now. It’s always all about NYC. I’d like to see what changes are being made out here on the West of NY! When can or will NYC be all by its self.
    NYC is all Democrats, the rest of the state is Republican.

  12. New york city especially is long over due for an infrastructure rebuilding. The MTA was built long ago and looks like it. It’s embarrassing actually how run down and decrepit the MTA is. Homelessness has been an issue. The mayor needs to address that one. He also can do a better job with housing. He can also add in the schools. They need a plan for rebuilding abd modernization. I agree with focus on this project. New York City needs a major upgrade. It will also help with quality of life. It’s not 1940 anymore.

  13. Dont worry western New York billions of dollars to the city again you get nothing as usual but we can take down your skyway which only cuomo and poloncarz seem to think is an issue…

  14. Must be nice for this so called governor, to make all these improvements for the lower part of New York. Didn’t see anything in his plan or speech for upstate. Always for the city nothing for the rest of the state

  15. But the state is broke !!!! We are billions in the hole already according to Cuomo !! But we can spend billions in NYC and downstate ?? Are you kidding and you wonder why people are leaving this state . Tax capitol of the world but just keep wasting more money. I agree infrastructure needs upkeep any New Yorker can tell you where . I think there would be better ways to spend OUR hard earned money than a 51 billion price tag alone in NYC which if you start tallying the numbers is way more than that when you include all the other projects downstate !!! How about taking care of the thousands of vets that are homeless and deserve our help !!! That does not include the thousands of homeless families that are in dire need of help . From drug addiction to alcoholism! No just ignore that problem !! Then the unemployed that is skyrocketing!! Oh yes these are the little guys that will survive .As long as you cater to your high investment colleagues and fat cats making millions off this pandemic. . How about taking care of the WORKING CLASS that give you the endless coffers of money !!! People are mad , tired and sick of the waste . The worst of all is OUR representatives don’t seem to care unless we were a high donating special interest group . Wake up !!!!!! There is more to New York than the city !!! And god forbid we Speak up and want change . This is a beautiful state that is just being divided like the country and you Mr. Cuomo just keep it going .

  16. Douglas Benedetto | January 17, 2021 at 6:59 am | Reply

    We must drain the Albany swamp.
    Starting with Television evangelist Cuomo.

  17. So all political comments here… Doesn’t anyone want to discuss the lame rending for Pier 76? Looks like a concrete slab with a multilane highway for walking (?). Is that the best they could dream up?

  18. “Businesses will eventually come back in some form, and New York City itself will come back”

    “Eventually” is a LONG time.

    After the 1975 financial collapse of NYC under Abe Beame, it took over 20 years and three mayors for the city to return to any semblance of “normalcy,” and, at that time, NYC still had tax income coming in in the form of sales, income, and property taxes. Today, NYC has practically nothing coming in.

    If anyone thinks that they will wake up some morning and hear that Cuomo and deBlasio are announcing the “all clear” on this virus, and things can return to “normal,” are living in a dream world. This “virus” and the city’s and state’s financial collapse will be with us a LONG time unfortunately, at least past the next mayoral election, and, quite possibly, past the next governor’s election.

  19. Born and lived in Western New York since 1950. Polititions do little to nothing to help this area. It’s always been about our tax dollars going to NYC. Nothing has changed, it’s about NYC, not the rest of the state!

  20. Nice idea, it’s a shame there won’t be any normal people left in NYC to enjoy it. Maybe the gov should focus on making NY a safe and welcoming place for the people already here and help stop the mass exodus from NYC. The Streets and the subway system is a dangerous place to be, what’s the point of building a $300b homeless shelter. Doesn’t the guy realize that people are legates to walk the streets , open businesses and in some areas walk out of their house. Priorities sir , priorities.

  21. New York City is the economic engine of the state? C’mon small business, agriculture is the engine of the state. The rest of us rural nyers must suffer at the hands of politicians who are more interested in the well being of the city.

  22. Todd J Schaeffer | January 17, 2021 at 3:29 pm | Reply

    Was this deal made before the election with Joe biden to get all this money I feel for all the buissness owners in new York they all got a slap in the face from you very sad

  23. Smiling happy people

  24. Let’s hope Cuomo has his CCP sponsors to pay for it.
    While NY businesses leave in a hurry.

  25. Should have been done so long ago.
    Hillary and Schumer did nothing for NY

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