Buffalo, NY (WBEN) - More new jobs are coming to Buffalo as a part of what Governor Andrew Cuomo is calling one of the biggest state investments ever in the city.
New York State will build a state-of-the-art anchor hub facility for high tech and green energy businesses at the site of the old Republic Steel mill that is now being called RiverBend. The state will invest $225 million in to the project, which has already leveraged a private investment of $1.5 billion from two California-based companies. Those tenants will be Soraa, which specializes in LED lighting, and Silevo, which manufactures Solar cells.
The two companies combined will create 850 permanent new jobs, and construction of the facility is expected to create 500 construction jobs.
"As governor I can look you in the face and say that for too many years, the state government did not fulfill its responsibility to Buffalo and Western New York," said Cuomo. "We promised to change that and we are changing that and today is proof of that."
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown said that the site is "shovel ready," and has already cleaned up its industrial past before selling the land to the city.
Cuomo said that the new site would be a magnet for other new-energy manufacturing companies. "Companies that need that R and D facility come to Buffalo because of the facility."
The $225 million investment by the state will be used to establish infrastructure at the site including water, sewer, utility and roads; construct 275,000 square feet of facilities for Soraa and Silevo; and purchase and own equipment. Neither company is receiving direct funding from the State’s $225 million investment. Additional facilities will be built over time to accommodate new manufacturing companies operating in the field of biotech, high tech and green energy. The facilities and equipment will be owned by the State University of New York Research Foundation.