Riverbend Project: stakeholders come together

Our Riverbend project has entered the final phase as we, in conjunction with UB Regional Institute and National Grid, look to finalize the data collected and complete a final report.

We have continued our outreach on the Riverbend Area: Infrastructure Needs Assessment over the past several months, updates can be seen here.

Last month, we hosted our first Stakeholder Forum.

All parties involved in the outreach process were invited to the Partnership to view the initial data findings from our surveys regarding developments in the project area.

solar city rendering
Solar City rendering

The goal of the forum was to present findings on the capacities of the existing infrastructure systems (electric, road, rail, gas, water/sewer, etc.) and to aggregate growth potential based on development plans.

Here are some of the informational takeaways from UBRI’s presentation:

  • Square footage: there is currently 3,087,607 square feet of building space in the project area. Planned developments for the area will add an additional 2,443,956 square feet of space, a 79 percent increase, to be used mostly for manufacturing. Additionally, the space will be used for offices, warehousing and residential units.
  • Development areas: the Solar City factory dominates the new square footage with its roughly one million square foot solar panel manufacturing site. Significant developments will also be occurring in the former Bethlehem Steel site along Route 5, with just over 400,000 square feet of new construction.
  • Time frame: the bulk of the new development will occur in approximately one to two years from now.

There are enormous development plans in the works for this project area, all expected to occur within the next five years, that will be tremendously beneficial for the region.

In conjunction with our project partners (UBRI and National Grid,) we are working with stakeholders to determine the most effective way to proceed with these plans in order to ensure a long-term, first-class infrastructure and utilities system is in place.

Stay tuned for a blog post in late January which will detail the final data compiled.

If you have any questions about the RAINA project, please contact me.