Building the I-86 Innovation Corridor
A group of seven municipalities and two counties in New York’s Southern Tier sought a progressive and innovative team of consultants to develop a hit-the-road-running strategy for transforming the area into an innovation corridor. Camoin Associates teamed with Bergmann Associates, Maverick & Boutique, and frequent Camoin senior adviser Catherine Renault of Innovation Policyworks to lead a collaborative strategic planning process, arriving at a strategy designed to accelerate public/private investment, create job opportunities, advance regional competiveness, and create the magnetism to draw and keep young, skilled workforce participants.
Camoin Associates utilized an interdisciplinary approach that included Maverick & Boutique’s unique and proven stakeholder facilitation techniques. The plan includes interlocking components for workforce development and attraction, the built environment, acceleration of technological innovation, leadership, and identity/marketing. The plan exploits, connects, and leverages the region’s strengths and resources, including key physical assets and existing “innovation cultivators,” while addressing current voids in the region’s innovation infrastructure.
The final product is an actionable strategy that the Corridor’s cross-sector stakeholders are implementing in a spirit of exceptional and sustained collaboration.
- Innovation-focused economic development strategy
- Workforce development strategy
- Strategies for physical infrastructure improvements and the creation of vibrant communities
- Marketing and communications plan
- Awarded an Upstate Revitalization Initiative grant of $500 million by the state of New York. A portion of those funds will be used to implement specific sections of the Corridor.
- Binghamton University signed on to create and implement the "Center for Technology Infusion" that focuses on advanced technologies for the transportation equipment manufacturing sector.
- The Town of Erwin in proceeding with a major planning effort to create the Town Center live/work/play environment as called for in the plan.
- Innovation-based companies continue to be created and expand, such as Micatu, Inc. as profiled in this article. In fact, Micatu is on the cusp of buying, occupying and expanding into one of the key sites profiled in the plan, namely the Sikorsky building near the airport.
- Downtown Elmira was awarded a $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative Award and will use it to implement that portion of the I-86 Corridor Plan, namely the reinvestment into downtowns to make them into vibrate centers for businesses and residents.
- Numerous sections of the Southern Tier were awarded funds under the State's New NY Broadband program to enhance internet speeds and availability, another item in the plan.
I-86 Strategic Action Plan