Gov. Cuomo pledges $50 million to develop riverway in Rochester

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The Roc the Riverway program is described as "an ambitious plan to focus development along the Genesee River." (Photo: City of Rochester)

Rochester, N.Y. (WHAM) - New York Governor Andrew Cuomo was in Rochester Thursday morning to announce $50 million in state funding to revitalize the riverway in Rochester.

The Roc the Riverway program is described as "an ambitious plan to focus development along the Genesee River."

Governor Cuomo first mentioned the Roc the Riverway program in his State of the State 2018 address.

As many as 30 development projects will be consolidated as part of the program to upgrade existing buildings and facilities and create new attractions.

Some potential projects include completing the Genesee Riverway Trail through the center of the city, rewatering the Broad Street Aqueduct and redesigning some of the parks along the riverway.

The city working with Bergmann Associates to develop renderings for the project.

“Bergmann facilitated the planning and design process, resulting in the ROC the Riverway vision, a graphic representation of the City's LWRP. Using a series of design workshops, Bergmann's team of urban planners, landscape architects and engineers worked collaboratively with city staff to pull together existing initiatives, as well as new aspirational projects,” said Andrew Raus, AICP Bergmann Vice President for Northeast Buildings. “The end product is a holistic vision for Rochester's waterfront.”

Significant upgrades are being suggested for the Blue Cross Arena at the War Memorial, the Rochester Riverside Convention Center and the Rundel Memorial Library building.

One of the main goals of the program is to create a four season, 24-hour waterfront with public spaces that bring more visitors to downtown Rochester.

"Downtown Rochester has experienced a major renaissance in recent years, and with this investment to transform the Genesee River waterfront, we help unlock the untapped potential in this region," Governor Cuomo said.

In the announcement, Governor Cuomo and Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren said they aim to attract private dollars to bring attractions, businesses and spaces along the waterfront. Those private sector partners were not specified.

Chamber of Commerce President Bob Duffy and Monroe Community College Anne Kress are leading the advisory board tasked with taking the proposed projects and coming up with a comprehensive plan.

The governor has given the board three months to come up with a plan to submit to the state.

More information from the City of Rochester's plan can be found here.