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Geneva Tech Park receives nearly $1.5 million in federal funding

A 72-acre agricultural park in Geneva will receive a more than $1.4 million influx of federal funding.

U.S. Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand said last week that the federal Economic Development Administration had allocated $1.47 million for the Cornell Agriculture & Food Technology Park to construct “Tech Farm 2.” The funding will be used to expand the existing Tech Farm business incubator building by constructing a 20,000-square-foot adjacent building that will have the capacity to accommodate up to three new tenants in the city of Geneva.

The total cost of the project is estimated at $2.1 million. The city of Geneva and the state of New York will provide the local matching funds.

“This funding will supercharge the Tech Farm in the Cornell Agricultural & Food Technology Park, which will support startup food processing and agricultural-based businesses to take root, create jobs and grow in the Finger Lakes area,” Schumer said in a statement. “With the Tech Farm 2 building, even more budding businesses can move into the Tech Farm’s state-of-the-art facilities, access Cornell’s over 150 years of agricultural innovation and research, and take their newly developed products from the laboratory into commercial production to sell to the world.

The project will include the construction of manufacturing and ancillary spaces including loading and logistics areas, office space and parking. Once complete, the project will help create manufacturing jobs in the food processing industry, attract private investment and strengthen the regional economy. Schumer and Gillibrand said roughly 10 jobs would be created, and $150,000 in private investment is expected.

“As the chair of the Tech Farm board and on behalf of the full board we are excited to learn of the EDA approval of grant funding for Tech Farm 2,” said Michael Manikowski. “This second building will provide a home for new ag food and beverage processing businesses in Ontario County and the entire Finger Lakes Region. We want to thank Sen. Schumer, Sen. Gillibrand and Gov. Cuomo for their steadfast support for this project.”

The 72-acre Cornell Agricultural & Food Technology Park was created in the early 2000s with the goal of fostering the creation of innovative technologies related to agriculture, bio-based industries and food, and houses the existing 20,000-square-foot Tech Farm business and technology incubator. The existing Tech Farm facilities allow tenants in the incubator building to take newly developed products from the laboratory into a commercial production environment.

“Cornell University’s Tech Farm is home base to countless agricultural businesses and has significantly contributed to the city of Geneva and the Finger Lakes regional economies,” Gillibrand said. “This EDA funding for Tech Farm 2 will build on the success of the first campus and serve as a source of innovation for new businesses and local jobs. Continuing New York state’s great legacy as leaders in agricultural developments depends on investments like this in up-and-coming businesses and researchers who will contribute to our academic institutions, private industry and government entities.”

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