CATSKILL – Greene County is set to spend $ 1.6 million in federal funding to expand natural gas service at the Catskill site of the Exit 21 West medical campus project.
At the Greene County Legislature’s Public Works Committee meeting on Monday evening, the committee unanimously approved a resolution to reach a deal with the Central Hudson Gas and Electric Company to expand the infrastructure of natural gas on site. The resolution will now be put to the vote of the entire legislature.
The county will receive $ 9,160,000 in federal funding from the American Rescue Plan Act, which passed last March.
Columbia Memorial Hospital, Albany Medical Center and New York Oncology Hematology are teaming up to build a 40,000 square foot medical facility on a 60 acre site in Catskill owned by the Greene County Industrial Development Agency.
The planned facility, which is located just off Exit 21 on the New York State Freeway, will focus on outpatient treatment.
“The way medicine progresses, a lot of things become outpatient services,” Groden said Tuesday. “You can have your knee replaced now and be sent home later in the afternoon. This is how technology evolves these days. It used to be that you could spend four or five days in the hospital. You can also do things like colonoscopies or cataract surgeries which can be done within hours and the patient goes home. So this is the type of facility they planned to build.
Outside developers will build their facility before the county builds its planned mental health and community services facility on the same Catskill development site.
“What we’re trying to do is create a medical campus,” Groden said. “We’ll have the two anchors there and we’ll have the option of what we call two more pads where we can maybe attract a cataract or ophthalmic type center so that the three or four of them complement each other rather than to compete. “
Groden said medical groups could start construction on their part of the project as soon as the weather breaks in the spring, while the county hopes to start building its mental health center by the end of next year.
“We are paying for the gas line, but for their development costs they will have to pay for their own walkways and water and sewer extensions,” he said.
Groden said the three medical organizations believe Catskill will be an ideal location for their facilities, as the site will be located between the Kingston and Albany areas and could serve residents of all intermediate municipalities.
“It’s obviously very convenient because it’s right next to the Thruway,” he noted. “For our citizens, it’s wonderful because you won’t have to travel to Albany to get specialized service. It will be in your own backyard. Not to mention job creation. These would all be professional positions that would be high paying jobs with good benefits. So you would get a second benefit not only with the medical services, but also with the employment base.
The resolution also includes $ 174,8,000 in ARPA funding for professional engineering services for the project to be provided by architectural, engineering and planning firm CPL in Poughkeepsie.