20 priority projects identified by local communities awarded $49 million to strengthen shoreline protections, increase resiliency across two counties
Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul and New York Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Commissioner Erik Kulleseid today showcased 20 shoreline resiliency projects in Niagara and Orleans counties that are receiving an estimated $49 million in state funding through Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s Lake Ontario Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative (REDI). The projects were reviewed at a meeting of the Niagara and Orleans REDI Region Planning Committee, which includes local elected officials and other stakeholders.
“Shoreline communities have faced tremendous challenges in recent years. That's why we have taken aggressive action to help local governments, businesses and homeowners with state support to improve resiliency, address the impact of flooding, and fight the threat of climate change,” Hochul said. “This targeted funding for 20 priority projects in Niagara and Orleans counties will address critical infrastructure needs to ensure sustainability long-term. These important efforts will help to combat devastation from extreme weather events, strengthen our economy, and enhance quality of life for residents.”
Kulleseid said, “Gov. Cuomo continues to focus support on shoreline communities that have been struggling with impacts of high water on Lake Ontario. These 20 REDI projects in Niagara and Orleans counties will help address a variety of issues, from reducing risks to roadways, to protecting shorelines from erosion, to maintaining public use of beaches, piers and docks. Gov. Cuomo recognizes that recreation and tourism are important economic drivers for this region that must be maintained.”
As part of the state’s ongoing response to record flooding that hit the Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River shoreline communities this past summer, Cuomo created the REDI Commission, a multi-agency team tasked with studying sustainable solutions to strengthen infrastructure and mitigate impacts from future flooding along the shorelines of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River, while bolstering the region's local economies.
Additional details and Niagara and Orleans counties REDI project profiles are available here.
Through REDI, the state has committed up to $300 million to rebuild the shoreline, as well as improve resiliency in flood-prone regions along Lake Ontario. The REDI Commission allocated $20 million for homeowner assistance, $30 million to improve the resiliency of businesses, and $15 million toward a regional dredging effort that will benefit each of the eight counties. The remaining balance, $235 million, has been allocated toward local and regional projects that advance and exemplify the REDI mission.
The REDI Commission will hold an implementation conference in Albany on Nov. 20. The conference will provide REDI funding recipients with information about project implementation, including permitting and environmental reviews, as well as an opportunity to meet with relevant state agencies to ensure REDI projects are implemented as soon as possible.