Gov. Andrew Cuomo came to Auburn less than two weeks ago to announce the city was the latest winner of a $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative grant, which will fund a variety of projects aimed at continuing Auburn’s downtown renaissance. But now that the dust has settled from the announcement, many Auburnians may be left wondering, “What now?”
The city submitted its winning application for the DRI — a program started in 2016 that divides $100 million a year among 10 municipalities across the state to revitalize downtown corridors — to the state on June 1. Auburn’s application played on the city’s historic roots with the theme “This place matters” and highlighted several projects vying for state funding, including $1.5 million for improving the East Hill Family Medical Center, $1.2 million for a public safety facility, $1.1 million for an arts campus on the city’s west end and $300,000 to expand Auburn Public Theater.
However, just because those projects helped push Auburn’s application to the top, doesn’t mean they will receive funding. In the end, the state gets the final say on which projects get DRI support, and Auburn has a lot of work to do before shovels are in the ground.