Manufacturing Dissent

Written by Andrew J. Hawkins on . Posted in Economic Development, Government Operations, Spotlight

Manufacturing Dissent For manufacturers in New York, a complex and expensive climate By Andrew J. Hawkins Earlier this year, Jay McHarg, president of the Rochester-based company American Aerogel, received a letter from the Department of Environmental Conservation that made his head spin. The agency was asking McHarg to pay thousands of dollars in fees on hazardous wastewater disposal, a by-product of his company’s production of custom-made packing material. But the fees were not from this year, or even the year… [More]

Expert Roundtable: Manufacturing

Written by Andrew J. Hawkins on . Posted in Economic Development, Energy, Government Operations, Labor/Unions, Spotlight, Technology

Kenneth Adams President and CEO, Empire State Development Corporation Q: What is the state’s manufacturing future? Kenneth Adams: There’s a great history of manufacturing in the state. What you see today are manufacturers whose competitive advantage is in being a technology-oriented sector. So they get more specialized, but they aren’t necessarily household names. Now, my role is so much broader. I see all types of manufacturing companies. The strength of so many of these manufacturers—in many cases they are taking… [More]

Green New York – Voices

Written by City & State on . Posted in Energy, Environment, Government Operations, Real Estate/Construction, Spotlight, Transportation

Michael Gianaris State Senator, Queens Q: Is New York City getting greener?  It’s not green enough, but I think it is getting greener. The mayor has been aggressive in pushing a number of policies through PlaNYC that are moving us in the right direction incrementally, whether it’s the million trees or the new building-efficiency requirements, that sort of stuff. He’s been aggressive in trying to make the city greener, but it’s moving too slowly for my taste. Eric Goldstein Director of… [More]

Scorecard: Green New York City

Written by City & State on . Posted in Energy, Environment, Government Operations, Real Estate/Construction, Spotlight, Transportation

THE ISSUES Transit funding The city’s mass-transit systems make it an energy-efficient place, but it’s unclear where money will come from to keep them running. Comptroller Tom DiNapoli reported that the MTA’s plan to borrow nearly $15 billion for capital spending would put stress on its already strained operating budget. “We’ve got to find a way of finding a sustainable, permanent, comprehensive funding pot to keep our subways, buses and commuter-rail systems in good operating condition and modernized as appropriate,”… [More]

Expert Roundtable: Green New York City

Written by City & State on . Posted in Energy, Environment, Government Operations, Real Estate/Construction, Spotlight, Transportation

  DAVID BRAGDON Director, Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability Q: How green is New York City?  DB: Statistically, it starts from a strong position, simply because of the population density and the good transportation system. It also has historically had a strong parks system, and our acreage of parks is fairly high for an American city. Those are statistical acts of history. Q: Is the city getting greener?  DB: Those are the things within our control, and the… [More]

Losing Steam

Written by Jon Lentz on . Posted in Energy, Environment, Other Features, Spotlight

Below the surface of Manhattan, buried among the water mains, electrical wires and telephone lines, is a hidden element of the city’s green infrastructure: steam. The system is not powered by renewable resources like solar or wind. It doesn’t get any state subsidies or incentives. It’s not among the 132 sustainability initiatives in Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s PlaNYC. The city’s underground steam system, however, still bolsters New York City’s status as one the greenest cities in the country, and deserves a… [More]

Schoharie Blues

Written by City & State on . Posted in Government Operations, Housing, Other Features, Real Estate/Construction, Spotlight

At first glance, the white tents behind the Schoharie Reformed Church make the parking lot look inviting, like a yard sale. But as you walk past piles of construction debris, mud-caked minivans and makeshift tables displaying donated bottles of used cleaning products, a different scene reveals itself. The parking lot is a staging area for disaster relief. The Village of Schoharie (population: 1,300) was largely destroyed by flooding after Tropical Storm Irene last month. It’s a nightmare that Assemblyman Pete… [More]

Expert Roundtable: Infrastructure

Written by City & State on . Posted in Economic Development, Government Operations, Real Estate/Construction, Spotlight, Transportation

Joan McDonald Commissioner, New York State Department of Transportation Q: In what shape is New York’s infrastructure? JM: Our transportation system is one of the oldest in the country. We also feel the impact of harsh winters—and a fairly harsh hurricane in the last couple of weeks. Many of our roads and bridges were built before the interstate highway system. Our downstate parkways were built to accommodate vehicles of a much different size and weight and in a time when… [More]

Infrastructure-VOICES

Written by City & State on . Posted in Economic Development, Government Operations, Real Estate/Construction, Spotlight, Transportation

Hope Cohen Associate Director, Regional Plan Association’s Center for Urban Innovation  Q: Is New York’s infrastructure in good shape? Some things are working better than other things. Generally speaking, if a piece of infrastructure has a dedicated revenue stream, it’s in better shape. Classically, the Port Authority-maintained bridges are the best, having the best toll stream. MTA-maintained bridges are next, and New York City-maintained bridges do less well, for example across the East River, because they do not have dedicated… [More]

Dream Deferred

Written by Laura Nahmias on . Posted in Government Operations, Health Care, Housing, Social Services, Spotlight

A status update on New York’s Age-Friendly NYC plan The 2007 comprehensive plan Mayor Bloomberg unveiled to address the city’s older population has 59 goals. But while some of the plan’s initiatives are unqualified successes, others have been placed on a permanent back burner because of the ailing economy. One of the initiative’s early successes, advocates and city politicians say, is a program called ‘Safe Streets for Seniors.’ For older adults, moving around a city like New York can be… [More]