As “Year of Business Development” Winds Down Successes Build Up
County Adds to List of Economic Development Accomplishments — Confirms Agreement with
City of Danbury for Interstate Sewer and Other Shared Services
CARMEL, NY – County Executive MaryEllen Odell announced today an eventful close to 2016 and the “Year of Business Development.” At the State of the County Address last March, 2016 was designated the Year of Business Development, thereby kicking off a focused plan of strategic initiatives and partnerships designed to positively impact the business climate, economic development and Putnam’s desirability as a place to live, work and play.
The Year of Business Development achieved significant goals highlighted by approved plans for a new senior center at the Butterfield site in Philipstown, the renovation and rebirth of Tilly Foster Farm as the new Tilly Foster Educational Institute, and the county’s recent award of a $2M Regional Economic Development grant toward the revitalization of the Village of Brewster. This project is newly strengthened by a sanctioned agreement with the City of Danbury whereby Putnam County will buy excess sewer capacity from the city to develop commercially zoned land in the Town of Southeast, as well as exploring other shared services.
“Our targeted focus on economic development and the significant contributions from supporters, including the Chambers of Commerce, the Legislature and the EDC, has generated significant momentum toward improving the business climate and quality of life in Putnam County,” said County Executive MaryEllen Odell. “Adding this partnership with Danbury is a crowning achievement to the county’s 2016 successes and an outstanding way to end our Year of Business Development.”
“Now we look toward 2017 and the grand opening of Tilly’s Table farm-to-table dining experience at Tilly Foster Educational Institute along with the completion of the Butterfield Senior Center, phase one construction on the Envision Brewster revitalization project and implementation of our partnership with the City of Danbury to create a bi-county economic development zone and shared services that will position Putnam for continued success in 2017 and beyond,” added Odell.
“I am elated we are receiving state funding to revitalize Brewster,” said Ginny Nacerino, Chairwoman, Putnam County Legislature. “This project will attract millennials to the area and prove to be an economic stimulus to Brewster, the gateway to Putnam County.”
The new agreement with the City of Danbury will enable commercial development of a stretch of Route 6, bordering Danbury through the town of Southeast to the Village of Brewster. The agreement also includes the development of a task force that will be committed to identifying and exploring other shared services opportunities, such as transportation, tourism, education, recreation, emergency services and economic development.
“The partnership between Danbury and Putnam County is an opportunity that will benefit both of our communities,” said Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton. “We are excited to see the revitalization of our neighboring town and recognize that economic development is something we can celebrate regardless of whose soil the project lies on. The prospect of partnering through various services is one we certainly look forward to and I am hopeful that this is a relationship our communities will continue to grow and develop for years to come.”
A special task force will be assigned in January to manage the interstate sewer agreement and the project’s construction. A separate task force will be designated to assess opportunities for shared services, including emergency services and law enforcement collaboration.
According to Putnam County Sheriff Don Smith, the Sheriff’s Office has enjoyed a great relationship with the Danbury Police Department and the City of Danbury. “In our mutual missions of serving and protecting the residents of our neighboring communities, we routinely work very closely together, sharing intelligence on criminal activity affecting our area and coordinating efforts in the war on drugs. It makes perfect sense that we continue to foster this great symbiotic relationship between the City of Danbury and Putnam County.”
This distinct partnership with Danbury further complements the county’s efforts to impact economic growth in Brewster. Putnam County was recently awarded a $2M Regional Economic Development grant toward the revitalization of the Village of Brewster, a project that is designed to create more jobs and attract millennials to the area to live, work and play. Phase I of this project is expected to begin in 2017 and includes, among other things, a transit oriented development adjacent to the Brewster Metro-North train station.
“The Village of Brewster has always been the ‘Hub of the Harlem Valley’,” said Frank Smith, Deputy Director, Putnam County Tourism. “In the late 20th century, two rail lines made Brewster an epicenter for freight and commerce. The 21st century has different plans for Putnam’s eastern-most village. Regional connectivity looks to restore the ‘Hub of the Harlem Valley’ name to Brewster. Between the Envision Brewster Initiative, the opportunity to expand Putnam’s Rail Trail into Connecticut, and development of the Route 6 corridor, Brewster aims to be an example of smart growth in order to attract more folks to live, work, and play in Putnam County.”