By Fred Stabbert III
Town of Delaware Supervisor Ed Sykes sat back in his seat last Wednesday night, looking his...
To the People:
What a difference a year makes.
It was just one year ago that that work began in earnest on the Montreign Resort Destination Casino. Not that work hadn’t already begun months before – clearing land, putting in infrastructure and getting ready for the heavy construction phase, but folks where still asking …what’s going on with the casino?
It was just a year ago that land had just been cleared at the Veria Lifestyle Management site and folks where asking …what’s going on with the spa project?
The anticipation is understandable since we have waited for so long for investments of this scale to take place here. Yet now the skyline clearly shows the enormity and complexity involved in such large-scale investments.
Empire Resorts just completed its topping off ceremony of its mega project with cranes working on site typically seen in major cities building sky scrapers. The company is forging ahead as promised and making its vision to became THE premier destination resort casino facility in the Northeast a reality. And there is yet much work to be done before the doors open on both projects.
It was just a year ago we were navigating potholes, while we passed dilapidated buildings on Jefferson Street in Monticello. Now the Village has doubled down on private sector investment along the street with a new roadway and sidewalks making a visual statement of its determination to be an integral part of Sullivan County’s economic resurgence.
It was just a year ago that the County was busy ironing out the details of moving forward with the construction of the long debated county jail. Now the land where it will be situated near Exit 104 on Route 17 is cleared.
It was just a year ago that several sites along the Route 42 Kiameshia corridor remained empty and abandoned. Now retail development is well underway.
And while these examples speak to the more urban center of our county, our surrounding towns and hamlets like Roscoe, Callicoon, Narrowsburg, Rock Hill, Liberty and Wurtsboro are all investing in their own ways through small business development, updating comprehensive plans, investing in development plans, and applying for target specific grants all in an effort to keep the momentum catalyzed by the Empire Resorts project going.
The opaque picture of the Sullivan County economy is beginning to become much clearer as anticipated. Optimism is high and opportunities are growing in Sullivan County.
We are just past Thanksgiving and well into our holiday season, but our list of people we need to thank is long indeed:
• We thank the businesses and institutions that endured the tough times for so long;
• We thank Sullivan County Renaissance for focusing on our community challenges;
• We thank the Sullivan United economic development team for its steadfast business support and promotional efforts along with the members and sponsors of our respective organizations; and
• We thank our elected leaders in county and local government, and the residents of the county for collectively helping making these developments happen.
We look forward to a year from now as we welcome more investment, new projects, and opportunities yet to be determined.
Wishing you all a Happy Holiday season and a very prosperous and Happy New Year!
President, Sullivan County Partnership for Economic Development