FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 22, 2023
Mayor Noble Announces $21.7 Million Grant Award for the Kingston Waterfront
RAISE is Largest Grant Award in Kingston’s History
KINGSTON, NY – Mayor Steven T. Noble is pleased to announce that the City of Kingston has been awarded $21.7 million through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (USDOT) Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) grant program, the largest grant award in Kingston’s history.
The $21.7 million RAISE grant will support the Kingston Weaving the Waterfront Transportation Project, a multi-faceted initiative that will significantly expand the walkability of the waterfront, connect residents from underserved neighborhoods, and bolster the Waterfront Business District.
The project, part of the Weaving the Waterfront initiative, will not only improve safety and access to park spaces, also plans ahead for climate and sea level change by elevating roadways in two flood prone areas, East Strand and Delaware Avenue. The project develops walking and biking access throughout the Rondout Creek and Hudson River Waterfront areas, and will increase safety for pedestrians and cyclists and access to nature. New sidewalk and bicycle paths will provide connections to and from the historic business districts, will complete branches of the Kingston Greenline and the Empire State Trail (EST), and will connect to the 520-acre Sojourner Truth State Park. In addition, the improvements will help the Ponckhockie residents and local businesses. This project, paired with the proposed new zoning code, will allow for smart development in the Rondout neighborhood.
“Last year I stood in Kingston and promised I would not stop fighting for the community to reconnect our neighborhoods to the waterfront and transform the downtown, today I am pleased to say a promise made is now a promise kept. This game changing $21+ million is the missing piece of the puzzle to help Kingston revitalize the downtown waterfront, bringing the city one step closer to achieving equity, creating good paying jobs, and bolstering economic development,” said Senator Schumer. “Our infrastructure should connect, not divide the city, and with this highly competitive grant heading to the Hudson Valley, I am thrilled to help one of the true gems of Kingston – its waterfront – finally shine to its truest potential. As majority leader, when I led the bipartisan Infrastructure & Jobs Law to passage, I had places like Kingston in mind and projects like the waterfront revitalization with all the good-paying local jobs and economic impact it could have on our downtown businesses. I am excited to see this major funding work in tandem with the historic wins from my Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to increase quality of life, reconnect neighborhoods to the waterfront, and revitalize the local economy.”
Mayor Noble said, “We are so thrilled to win this monumental award, and wholeheartedly thank Senator Schumer for his tireless advocacy for Kingston, and Congressman Pat Ryan who personally advocated on Kingston's behalf and has been a continuous supporter. They see, like we do, Kingston’s need for connection to our breathtaking natural resources, making these assets accessible to residents of all abilities, and protecting our downtown homes and businesses from a changing climate. This grant will not only make an entire neighborhood safer, it will beautify the area, and bring sustainable growth to the waterfront. Thank you, Secretary Buttigieg and the USDOT, for supporting Kingston with the largest grant in our City’s history and believing in our vision for what our waterfront can become!”
“Both as County Executive and now in Congress, I’ve fought to deliver for Hudson Valley families, working to secure the infrastructure investments we need to revitalize our local economy and create good-paying jobs. This is an absolute game-changer for the city of Kingston and the region as a whole,” said Congressman Pat Ryan. “This transformational investment will provide sustainable transportation options, good-paying jobs, and cement our waterfront as a landmark destination for Hudson Valley residents for decades to come. Thank you to Senator Schumer and Mayor Noble for their close partnership throughout this process – I cannot wait to see our vision for Kingston’s waterfront come to fruition.”
Ulster County Executive Jen Metzger said, “I am incredibly thrilled to witness the significant influx of federal funds being allocated to Ulster County, which will greatly assist our community in adapting to the tangible and perilous effects of climate change that we are already facing. This remarkable investment in Kingston is truly well-deserved, as Mayor Noble and his dedicated team have been laser-focused on implementing climate adaptive design and mitigating damage from a changing climate for the past eight years. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to Senator Schumer and Congressman Pat Ryan for recognizing the City of Kingston and Ulster County’s steadfast commitment to combating climate change and for providing these remarkable new resources that will enable us to continue leading the Mid-Hudson region and the entire state of New York in our efforts to address this global challenge.”
Ward 8 Alderman Steve Schabot said, “This grant is an unprecedented win for Kingston. Through Mayor Noble’s persistence and hard work, he and his team have secured one of the most competitive grants in the country. One the key reasons I ran for Alderman was to support revitalization of the waterfront, so I am thrilled that my ward will see these improvements. This is a great leap forward for downtown, and I also believe that this funding will benefit midtown and uptown, as the community will be better connected. This historic grant award is a testament to the Mayor’s steady, dedicated leadership.”
Lisa Cline, Executive Director of the Hudson River Maritime Museum said, “The Hudson River Maritime Museum is delighted that Kingston has been awarded the RAISE grant for much-needed transportation infrastructure and flood resilience measures throughout the waterfront area. This project will provide vital pedestrian, bicycle, and vehicle connections through the City’s historic waterfront district, and the elevation of the roadway will enable residents to travel more safely during flood events. This grant will help revitalize our historic waterfront and support our businesses and community assets, while increasing access to unique environmental, open space, and cultural treasures for people from all ages, backgrounds, and abilities. We thank Mayor Noble for spearheading this crucial revitalization effort, and for his continued support of the waterfront and preservation of our rich maritime history.”
The RAISE grant award will support five projects that will complete vital connections between Kingston’s neighborhoods and natural landscapes and upgrade with ADA-accessible infrastructure:
1. Kingston Point Rail Trail Phase 2
Phase 2 will include paving a 10-to-12-foot-wide ADA-compliant path for pedestrians and bicyclists. The new path will begin where Phase 1 ends at Garraghan Drive and traverse over an old bridge, pass behind the Trolley Museum, and end at a small trailhead on East Strand Street. Phase 2 includes fencing, interpretation of historical places, and the construction of a small building to exhibit 9/11 artifacts in the Museum’s collection. Kingston Point Rail Trail Phase 2 designs are complete. Grant to be used for construction.
2. East Strand and North Street Complete Streets
The project’s second component includes the development of ADA-compliant sidewalks, a multi-use path or bike lanes, Complete Streets amenities, and flood resilience measures for 1.2 miles along the roads parallel to the Rondout Creek -- Rondout Landing, East Strand Street and North Street. Complete Streets will be implemented from the end of Broadway in the Waterfront Business District to the intersection of North Street and Delaware Avenue near Kingston Point Park. Green infrastructure and a canopy of urban street trees on Rondout Landing and East Strand will provide shade, stormwater capture, and species biodiversity. Two sections of East Strand that experience flooding during spring tides will be raised and rebuilt. Grant to be used for preliminary design, final design and construction.
3. Kingston Point Rail Trail Phase 3 – Trolley Trail
This component begins at the intersection of East Strand and North Streets, traveling east along the Trolley Trail causeway currently enjoyed by pedestrians and seasonal trolley tour patrons. An elevated 10-foot-wide, 0.72-mile climate-resilient boardwalk is proposed along the causeway adjacent to the trolley tracks. The boardwalk will traverse the length of the causeway before turning north to provide an accessible route up through Rotary Park, where the trolley route ends at a replica trolley station at the mouth of Rondout Creek.
Shoreline stabilization of the causeway, utilizing living shoreline approaches, and historic/archaeological mitigation will be required to enhance biodiversity and protect the rich pre-historic legacy of the area. Designs are complete. Grant to be used for construction.
4. Rotary Park & Kingston Point Park Pedestrian Connections/ Raising of Delaware Avenue
This component will complete the Empire State Trail/Hudson River Brickyards Trail connections through Rotary Park and Kingston Point Park with a safe, accessible path. A new network of sidewalks and multi-use paths along Delaware Avenue will create a linear connection that fills a critical in the Empire State Trail.
Delaware Avenue between North Street and Rotary Park will be raised to address flooding, which will provide at least 30 years of access to the parks. Complete Streets will also be implemented to improve pedestrian and bicycle access and ADA-compliance. Grant funds to be used for design and construction.
5. North Street Complete Streets
North of Delaware Avenue, Complete Streets will extend along North Street. Adjacent to the Hutton Brickyards, a 10-to-12-foot paved pathway will connect to the Hudson River Brickyard Trail, completing the Empire State Trail/Kingston Greenline. This path will provide multi-modal access to the Sojourner Truth State Park. Grant funds will be used for design and construction. Three new electrical vehicle charging stations will be installed at key locations, adding to an expanding citywide network of stations.
A full project description can be found here. The City of Kingston applied for the RAISE Discretionary Grant from the Federal government for the last three years.
Mayor Noble said, “I want to thank my Grant Management team for their rigor in creating a comprehensive and enticing application for this grant, and for all the work their office does each day to make our community a better place. This has been a long process but our success is in large part due to the great work of our City staff and community partners.”
The RAISE grant program provides funding for road, rail, transit, and port projects that have significant local or regional impact. Congress dedicated nearly $12.1 billion for 14 rounds of National Infrastructure Investments, and NY Senator Chuck Schumer and Congressman Pat Ryan have put their support behind Kingston.