Town of Warwick Supervisor Michael Sweeton recently reported that work to redevelop the former Mid-Orange Correctional Facility continues at an accelerated pace with five new businesses under construction, four under contract to purchase buildings or lots in addition to already established businesses on the site.
In July 2011, Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office announced that the Mid-Orange Correctional Facility in Warwick was one of seven prisons to be closed to save the money. And in 2014, the State of New York approved the transfer of the property to the Warwick Valley Local Development Corporation and the Town of Warwick.
From the beginning the Town Board’s objectives in acquiring the former prison were to create Warwick’s first and only business park that would produce tax revenues and provide jobs.
Who's here now
Today businesses that are currently operating on the site include Hudson Sports, Eden Restoration, Ground Control Excavating and Trans Tech Bus Company.
These businesses employ a total of approximately 50 people.
Local contractors also are working on site and parcels are paying taxes on property that never produced tax revenues for the Town.
Currently there are four new businesses under construction: Citiva Medical, Urban Xtracts, Phyto-Farma Labs, LLC, and Drowned Lands Brewery.
These businesses combined hope to employ close to 200 people.
Under contract or sold
Under contract or sold are five green field sites that should start construction early in 2020.
The businesses purchasing these lots range from research & development to light manufacturing.
More than 100 new jobs are estimated to be created from these five lots.
In addition the two lots that contain buildings on them have accepted offers and /or contracts. One will be developed as professional offices and the other is being considered as a health spa type facility.
From 50 to 100 additional jobs may be created from these projects. .
Town's vision: launching pad for entrepreneurs
Since 2015 Supervisor Sweeton has been working on using some buildings as a launching pad for entrepreneurs that would start and grow businesses in the corporate park that help the town reach its objectives.
He contacted the Orange County Industrial Development Agency, which had created accelerators in other parts of the County
However. the only business that pursued and obtained a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) was the Drowned lands Brewery.
“Thanks to the Orange County IDA, Warwick Valley Local Development Corporation and the Town Board for all the support to make this happen,” said Sweeton. “All told the hope for the corporate park is to have 450 to 500 jobs that range from $15 per hour up to salaries typical for those who have earned a Bachelor of Science and higher college degrees as chemists, scientists, engineers and architects. We are also developing with the Orange County IDA an accelerator for start up businesses as well as job training and classroom space.”.
Potential tax revenues: several million dollars
He added that potential tax revenues will be based in part of the costs of construction which are still not finalized but will result in several million dollars received by the town when complete.
Currently there are only two undeveloped parcels that are still for sale. Each could support up to a 250,000 square-foot building.
This redevelopment project is a joint effort between the Town, the Warwick Valley Local Development Corporation, the Orange County IDA, private business and the New York State Empire Development..
Areas for sale were purchased by the Warwick Valley Local Development Corporation, which thus far has successfully attracted companies to invest in Warwick like Citiva Medical, Kraftify Brewing Co. Ground Control, Eden Restoration, Trans Tech Bus Co. and Hudson Valley Sports.
Our efforts to turn a shuttered state facility into a productive commercial business park that will pay taxes and provide jobs is rapidly coming to fruition,” said Sweeton. “This is a great example of government and the private sector working together for good of the community”
Our efforts to turn a shuttered state facility into a productive commercial business park that will pay taxes and provide jobs is rapidly coming to fruition. This is a great example of government and the private sector working together for good of the community”
Warwick Town Supervisor Michael Sweeton