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$1.5M state grant boosts Seneca Army Depot rail upgrade

Governor Kathy Hochul announced a $1.51 million state grant aimed at rejuvenating the aging railway infrastructure of the former Seneca Army Depot. This financial boost is part of a broader $111.1 million investment under New York’s Passenger and Freight Rail Assistance Program, intended to enhance freight and port infrastructure across the state. The Seneca County Industrial Development Agency (IDA), which owns the depot, will utilize the funds for track rehabilitation and the development of a transload facility to support local businesses and farms, aiming to improve product transportation efficiency and decrease truck traffic.

The investment heralds a new era of economic growth and sustainability for Seneca County, according to IDA Executive Director Sarah Davis. The grant will facilitate the reconnection of existing businesses within the depot and support the logistical needs of rural enterprises, significantly benefiting the regional economy. Notable beneficiaries include Seneca Dairy Systems, Keystone Mills, and Finger Lakes Railway, all of which stand to gain from the enhanced rail services.

In addition to the depot’s rail upgrade, Finger Lakes Railway, with operational ties to the depot, received $4 million for grade crossing and bridge rehabilitation projects in Watkins Glen. This substantial state support underscores the commitment to revitalizing New York’s freight infrastructure, promising a more prosperous and efficient future for Seneca County’s business community and beyond.