Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council Announces Expansion of Frankfort Marina to Boost Tourism and Spur Local Economic Growth
The Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council today announced that the Village of Frankfort has signed its contract with the state to expand the Frankfort Marina and is moving forward with the first stages of the project with the assistance of an $113,812 award it received as part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's Regional Council initiative. The project will expand the Marina's recreational opportunities to include campsites, recreational trails, improved fishing access and a kayak/canoe launch. The additional recreational activities available and accessibility upgrades will increase visitors to the area and generate economic activity for local businesses and the Mohawk Valley region.
"This is a great example of a project that enhances our region's tourism industry by expanding upon our abundant natural and recreational resources," said Larry T. Gilroy, President of Gilroy, Kernan & Gilroy, Inc. and Co-Chair of the MVREDC. "Tourism and recreation are important economic engines in our region, and we are pleased this project is moving forward."
"The quality of life in the Mohawk Valley is a key component of economic development, including our recreational assets," said Bjong Wolf Yeigh, President of SUNY IT and Co-Chair of the MVREDC. "The expansion will create even more recreational opportunities for community residents and visitors to the popular Frankfort Marina and provide a boost to local businesses."
"Parks and quality recreational are critical building blocks for economically vibrant villages and cities," said State Parks Commissioner Rose Harvey. "By acquiring this land, the Village can develop new recreational opportunities for the residents and boaters as well as improve an underutilized green space in the community. It is one of many important steps Governor Cuomo is taking in the revitalization of the Mohawk Valley."
"New York's Canal system is an economic engine for the upstate region, directly contributing more than $380 million each year in tourism-related spending to communities all along the 524-mile Canal corridor," said Canal Director Brian U. Stratton. "The expansion of the Frankfort facilities on the Erie Canal provides enhanced services for boaters and other visitors."
The Frankfort Marina is a popular community site hosting picnic areas, a boat dock with fueling station, open space for fishing and hiking, restrooms, laundry facilities and a restaurant. Community residents frequent the Marina, and during summer months it is used by boaters on the Erie Canal. The unique inlet feature of the Frankfort Marina provides a safe, calm water place for boaters to launch and dock without dealing with the impacts of waves and currents from the Mohawk River/Erie Canal. With the resurgence in kayaking popularity, this location is an ideal launching and stopping point along the Canal.
In order to expand the Marina Park, the Village will purchase and develop underutilized land next to the Frankfort Marina, which is located between the Mohawk River and Railroad Street in the Village, and is currently owned by the New York State Canal Corporation. Trail, fishing and boat access construction is anticipated to begin this fall.
The project's progress was announced as Harvey and Stratton were participating in Cycling the Erie Canal bike tour across New York State, sponsored by Parks and Trails New York. The tour highlights the great scenery, interesting history of the Mohawk Valley and Erie Canalway.
Last year, a total of $785 million was awarded through the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) for job creation and community development projects consistent with each region's strategic plans. As part of that process, the Village of Frankfort was awarded $113,812 through the Environmental Protection Fund, administered by the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.
Frankfort Mayor Frank Moracco said, "The Frankfort Marina is an economic resource for the community, providing a critical stopping point for boaters travelling the Canal and hosting popular community events and festivals. Conveniently located near the Village's Downtown, the expanded marina will be a great boost for local businesses."
Senator James L. Seward said, "I commend Frankfort for taking advantage of their location along the Erie Canal and maximizing state dollars to advance a project that will provide great recreational opportunities for area families and outdoor enthusiasts while bolstering our small businesses that continue to grow with the burgeoning success of the regional tourism boom."
Assemblymember Marc Butler said, "I am pleased that the state recognizes the value of this Marina and appreciates the hard work that the village has put it into maintaining and developing it. This is the great news for the village of Frankfort and for our region as a whole because continued development along the Canal has been positive in terms of tourism and an enhanced economy."
To learn more about each regional council and their economic development plans, visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov.