In an effort to share her plan to help revitalize the North Country, State Senator Patty Ritchie today led a top aide to the state's job development chief on a tour of the vacant properties and buildings at the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center; property that, under a plan by Senator Ritchie and the City of Ogdensburg, could be redeveloped to create new opportunities and transform the region.
“I want to thank Ken Adams, the CEO for Empire State Development, for sending his personal representative to see first-hand how my plan to redevelop Airy Point could be the key to kick-starting Ogdensburg’s economy and putting people back to work,” Senator Ritchie said.
“I want to thank representatives of the City of Ogdensburg and the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority for partnering with me to help state officials understand why we need a comprehensive approach to redeveloping the campus.”
Last year, community leaders across Northern New York came together to help convince Albany to save the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center. Senator Ritchie saw the widespread community support as an opportunity to work with state leaders to take the blighted properties and empty buildings the campus and transform them into an asset to help create new jobs and opportunities for the people of the North Country.
“This won’t happen overnight, but the legislation I passed this year to begin the transfer process is helping use develop a pilot program to show the entire state how a community can transform underutilized assets into a tremendous opportunity for the region,” Senator Ritchie said. “I want to thank Empire Development for agreeing to work with us as an advocate to redevelop this critical part of the North Country’s future.”
The land is situated along Route 37, close to the international Ogdensburg-Prescott Bridge and is one of four parcels at the Psych Center that the state has previously identified as surplus. Under Senator Ritchie’s plan, the property would be immediately available to developers once the final transfer from state to city control is complete.
(State Senator Patty Ritchie is shown in the above photo with Thomas Conoscenti, director of Real Estate Development and Planning)