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Revival of deep water port planned for Mid-Hudson

NEWBURGH – Times are looking up for the City of Newburgh.  Local, state and federal officials gathered at the waterfront on Friday to announce the first steps to recreate the Port of Newburgh.

The Newburgh Council has voted to approve a conceptual plan for the port.

Friday Steelways Inc., based on the Hudson River waterfront in Newburgh, placed a bid on a contract to supply poured concrete decking to the Tappan Zee Bridge construction project.

The plan is to re-create the Port of Newburgh though a public and private partnership. The $16.5 million project would be funded by the Industrial Development agency, state, federal and private sources.

If awarded the contract more than 6,000 decking plates would be manufactured in Newburgh at the Steelways plant and shipped down the Hudson River to the bridge, Steelways President David Plotkin.

A bulkhead will need to be constructed at the site.

Plotkin feels his company is well situated to receive the contract.

“Location, where we are to the bridge versus the competition,” Plotkin said, is the advantage he has. “And the fact that we’re on the water; a lot of the competition isn’t. And some of the competition is out of state.”

Newburgh is 62 nautical miles from the Port of New York.  It is the only river/rail convergence between Albany and New York City.

“This is a great day,” Maloney said.  “It’s a great day for the City of Newburgh. It’s a great day for the Hudson Valley and it’s a great day for all of us who understand that big dreams go hand in hand with hard work.  Adding that this is just the first of a number of economic development announcements he hopes to make on this site.”

There is the potential for 100 to 150 new jobs on the site, according to Todd Diorio, president of the Hudson Valley Building and Construction Trades Council.

“These will be new jobs,” Diorio said.  “If some of these things go we’re looking at 100 to 150 new union jobs with good wages. We’re not talking about low wages we’re talking about good union wages, with pensions and health coverage.”

Mayor Judy Kennedy lent her full support to the project as well, saying it would be a major boost to the city’s economy.