Bob Duffy Talks #ROCTheRiverway

Friday, February 9th

Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce CEO Bob Duffy talked to us about the $50M promise to revitalize the riverfront in downtown Rochester. 


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

And Carter glory is. I huge announcement yesterday Governor Cuomo is in town to let us know that. Plans dropped fifteen million in CO at a project which is incredibly ambitious is being called the rock the river way program. I could transform. Downtown Rochester. Hopefully kind of in the same way that it's transform buffalo they've done with there waterfront property but there's a lot of questions about it it's a big big deal to need to bring in. An expert who knows all about that at all. And we think Rochester and and it's synonymous with that is the Rochester chamber CEO Bob Duffy on the line good morning about. Good morning editorial clay so much for your time off I heard you just get over the flu like the rest of Western New York air. Hey I have my flu shot everything this year I'm one of those people that penetrated argue. Don't know man I want got your feeling better you can join us especially for our. For Interpol got into town for best. I thought that grip now statistic. First off fifty million dollars is a huge investment. That the governor Lester revitalized waterfront and downtown. I've never seen ahead you're Mir the Mir awards. Are the wrong kind here because nobody ever dropped fifty million. It's a great great shut the airport yeah. When you look at so many cities that have done similar things and we're talking Cleveland Pittsburgh Austin Sacramento and orally to try to yet inject a little life. Into the water from property real quick Bob some of the highlights of the renovations and things were attacked to the downtown area. Well a would be and it took to the waterfront was quite an otherwise. Nature of the waterfront. At the right. They're a great list and he he can go back to the re watering can now. Project that was sent. Quebec 1000 office and Nigerian time Hackett put together some great plans Jesse charter school came in with a great plan for the the cal Beckett had time. The recession hit 2008 and what he really was not an issue are an option Beck as so those are table but the bears brought out. That should erotica planet ocean with a bit the library front walkway. Broad street he either is somehow connecting walkways are riverfront yet conventions are the hotels they arena. Are we have a license that. It'd be connected. The most important thing adult for this is going to be. Prioritize we have to look at what we prioritize what is the most impeccable first projects. And work that the biggest impact because I would see this is that the governor giving us a great gift of fifty million dollars. I think. Would fail we want to. Bring in private investment. In the once we could start stopping impeccable even then create. A process and angle excessive energy with other projects while verbal frock and there's a BO host of great suggestions coming. That's going to be the key issue is is dead priority what do we start with how we get people be created. Isn't that MLS play with the governor. What you disease part of was can help side buffalo. You can also had a tragic what is basically and Gordon nor many different plans for many years. I tight credit to people. The governor I keep three people the governor an and Syrian camp look cool is being. The drivers behind change if you look at can help side today. It's very similar to what we talked about here with a can help many many years ago. Irritable or build games this year I think they they exceed national TV. Featured can help side it is chizik at eight great tourism draw and I think those are things people look at one of the most impeccable investments here. Start it talking with Bob Duffy from Antioch Rochester chamber of commerce and that was my first thought when I brought this announcement was I immediately thought of buffalo and I immediately thought of what it's done for that city because it really is its its content jewel but at this point and I I really do believe that this can be the same for Roger. Well Bob you know they are some concerns from from the from people you see the although excited to see new means. And we do know that there's been construction issues in the cops we do know about the early on going project. What kind of strategy will be to make sure that a he doesn't get out of downtown the residents who are downtown now can still be able to enjoy the city like they do. I think what we have to do really and note that there is certain to be key personality advisory board with us. I want to finish with just listen. And there are several constituencies downtown. And part of it is making sure people are hurt and I hope this process would do that. Also understand we cannot make every single person happy in and one of the things that I files are. That would everything project. Army you get. Great energy for a injury energy against us and in Buffalo's great lesson bottle got it done so. It's impossible I don't know on unfortunately. While. I several years construction yeah. Quickly. The process they're like you guys are planning. It's Jabber three years so I would say. My involvement there might have been a the last six or seven years. It just kicked in with construction that set the stage is that was great and like everything the state there investment as a catalyst. Now that the pace serving as met to be not yet I doubt Peyton sleep has something to start with. He private investment it to jump bat and I think the river area of Rochester it is sad to sit at a coverage that's something yesterday it would let that was profound. I don't certainly. Duffy who just get over the flu by the way girl but they are true. I think anybody bat by phone here. And this does to these Pittsburgh. Cleveland and many other cities. Into the rivers in those cities including Rochester at one time with a backdoor that's where good scheme and should stripped off things. Well distributed. And our cities they're transforming our Baikonur river ways at a waterfront the front door. Earlier the political back to be fixed via. It will record that it is one thing that we should look at that I feel very strongly about this about fathered two daughters. We should not build it for how we are stated that we can build it. Four. Tomorrow for our our young leaders coming up young people should have a very strong voice. In this because they're the ones were really living here they're gonna want to be running things I think making sure that what we do. Is that acquired an election been done the past but what the future will look like what people really want to see so that's part of the process is making sure that. No voices are heard priorities are established. And at least at some point. If people are heard. It would go right to consensus were okay that and maybe it's not the perfect statement so they they say that I can live with that. I think it would get to point we get a consensus and then get energy behind it in derive it and not beat Moyer in the weeks and months of fighting yes and no. I don't. I think part of it easy and it's tough to see eat the big picture. Until it's all done by slowly but surely win. New establishments and and small bits and pieces come up the excitement. Will build and maybe Atmel quelled some of them some of that critic. Could it work now but Bob good like I wanna go back to something that you said in terms of yes we did get the sun 50000 dollar and governor Bob Elliott fifty million she's fifteen I'm losing it. But it's you did say I wanna read that as a down payment that it still isn't getting beat because there's several concerns. That this won't be enough to cover all of the money is going to have peace. These grants and so just ahead. Confirmed that this is there still nordic cup and we're not gonna do it all on a tight budget. They hit it qualifies as well as we could ever wrote this. They haven't fifty million dollars that it's been established as let's get gauntlet this. We have a great community. Developers would be a strong interest in this great business community. Great downtown residential community as well. And several things that I think we did do was look at all of prioritize what you start as he can build a foundation successful their first project you create more energy excitement and then in all the rest that you build momentum just keeps going in building built in if you could start. Run a broad street bridge in an. In a library in the convention senator and the arena and area. No we start inside Iraq. It's stars if you go into your direction because speed without Andrew street and I looked out my window right now beautiful real estate along the river out here. Good. Although the good of all over it would open a way to reach. Your father I've fault them and there's been talk about I faulty area becoming. Eventually a state park. There's just. You'll see in our area that and it has to start somewhere and in the governor called announcement yesterday is the start. And I it would ask people ascetic people should. Picture we we hold. Everybody ourselves accountable to do that that it in the best public interest we kind of put our best foot forward. But at least at some point it would. In Korea and an okay here's our best first shot at success. Let's go to get it done and get dead and really get bad dot keep building momentum. And Iraq sisters river way the waterfront it what do what do fabulous opportunity for the future and for somebody who's. Well one can help at that river for many many years. It is just aesthetically. Beautiful. But historically we have never really developed along the waterfront like we should. And which they've done some great things over the years. But a Quebec city you about my house I wanna give you what you are credit and presence ultimately is an office they built housing on one side of the river is built. They really created a lot excitement crossing over the river from the university in the books revenue area and and no chance it would Brooks landing. Look at the projects along the way that happened according polling in college transformational. That was put in place and still is. And you can look around and and make the most of the opportunities that we have been and some maybe there are restoring. Certain areas that need to be no changes and really brought up to today's standards. Others may be some something new and in note can help side. However we look at it in the county department history. And whether we are literally water or Oprah Samaria but having areas where they seek outside buffalo a winner basically. This summer they vote and it and you know as they enjoyed but it is day eighty year round attraction. There's definitely bringing families and people walking being downtown. Ordered to look at George Gordon events like restaurants. Bring your kids down. It has created a kind of energy and gonna happen overnight. I believe we start with this process ago. But I had suggestions if you're looking for places places are I know you got to figure out your strategy. Parking. Yes that's a big quite hockey people haven't. But party unity as it's spent a huge historical issue I think yeah. Are regularly I had someone bring up really yeah. I have been at his job and it's still burning in a park and. And I I actually have made my cash abuses over the years it's close. I understood in this business is very tough. And I don't you know the mayor is is really work hard try to address that again I the pick heading their their position. They're just the city she's going to be you know what while and crescent I will be coach sharing this committee. Note that the various. Issues with this are going to be Paramount. And I think that the mayor represents the city and I think part of what we will do is. We're very hard to listen support but I'm going to be big and let's prioritize but to establish some clear specific goals and let's go look at that skit people together as galvanize galvanize around something. Well that first project the first and best virtue would be. Let's get it done partial progress in short people can be done. So people rod district can come together so that and then just keep building and I'd just encourage you guys to your audience. Is a very young professional audience and I think that those voices have to be heard that doesn't want to maybe bring in our kids downtown. They're the ones are gonna be the bears account executives and cheaper people Ed Dowd wrote. And they're their beliefs right now there were ideas what they won a seat really matters. I don't be dumb answer to this is probably all of the above but do you see. This riverfront project team aimed more towards bringing people into downtown Austin this meal or establishing. More residency is right here in Center City. I would say can have both because of more excitement to bring more people wanna be there and be around. So either one works well in in both working to better. And that's the goal now that that is absolutely amazing job Rochester chamber CEO Bob Duffy and a lot of the threat not talking about the rock the river way projects. So that was announced yesterday fifty million from the state team. Get this started and hopefully we do follow in the steps of a can outside of buffalo and we can turn it into something similar because and that's the dream right there. I'm Duffy thank you so much for for joining us bullish throwing one must replace all the boys can't wrap. My doctors that was going to be let us. The opportunity at end of your listeners late in the week it would emails notes whatever can be. I'm getting a ton of emails today from people that wanna join the committee and actually are big because that he will be. But then I said that at a newspaper this morning. This is the goal that I've I don't governor well I think what's startup is that in six months that I wrote. 123 months as an hour at about two months and I honestly think we come up. With a great first step and maybe get priority project or projects. Within two months and move and get this thing going. Can't really create that kind of excitement. And it I think it's from downtown community the development community residents businesses every one. Personally people are passionate about the river and canal. And actually that seen in the past I think the about the award and as a group called the Nature Conservancy. We were so critical when we ended up. Creating basically. Eighty billion or outcome likely canonized like it is forever wild can never be developed. Police trade agreements you know many many years ago in Nature Conservancy. As the huge force at this site I know that they will be. Actively involved Genesee brewery has made major investments along the river in the air area. And so I think it's all exciting and and we're back with you would get all of that wants but what please don't their first project start that moment I think it's gonna built and built and built. The ball rolling you went out and we love register but. Find something a complete. So they're there only. Without Iraq. It's complaining is good. Things that's great we complain about the weather but you know what I would read the oil could hear politics no cold any date. Those are the things that I've seen I watch on the news of summit driving access to other states. Which freezing rain I'll take personal call to bring Summers and Paul. And multi minute for not commute bomber gonna know when this thing starts really pick up steam and those who are the most vocal against it's hard to think. Aren't may be that much besides this that's how we're gonna know that's a litmus test for us so I I pray and hope we get there. Sure I also did double dip to get ugly because devil's advocate would bring up things you should pay attention to. And if you're right you can defend if you're wrong direct got to find things you have to fix and I think the people I don't sit as. In my offices you know and in public office even now. I welcome people who are adversarial and will raise things because they are valuable and and they really are they're in I listen to that we don't solicit them. We should not stop momentum but you know they often bring up things we have to be very very careful. The only issue I have heard around registers sometimes he gets to appoint work in at these flights intensified and it just stops a lot of major projects. They're going. Eight in elk they're from now go back and I kinda things just stalled. It stopped. And was put forth is as maybe political. That can afford but sometimes it's just people of different things. And there's so many places now to mobilize and get to disagree on how to get and I'm gonna bother you wanna find these people I can go to pretty much any odd news station FaceBook page SI a lot of the because today as. What's. Yeah it is it is a great place near but not here's a thing. Deconstruct it. Wasting the that you should at a lot of people who do this publicly. And sometimes. They get their opinions might now be appreciated by some but they raise some very important things. But in the end. I go back to duplicate agreements or contracts or issues are often found in in my life. In both sides say now it's that. Great but I can live with a it's a good deal. Once excited ecstatic one excited and happy it's not a good deal also try to find some consensus. In ever gonna get and unanimity of opinion. But build a consensus split at some point people that might early it like it if they delivered that give them board and support. For me wanna get onboard or people who wanna get involved in the development this project where she'd be descend on. At this point your world and no word Donna wrote letters myself and express. Already coach like coach at a regional council that he has to deal from empire state development. Is going to be key member of that than a war and so I think the forest where our first meeting is next Monday the fourth resistor can organize its principals are working just. It can be exciting you could. Didn't say can't tell us but. You know maybe just look for ways in the if you guys wanna collect from your listeners ideas in a correct those and the analysts and goes over. I have great suggest this point I economic dimension is and who suggested but I imagine it is maybe you wouldn't know what about honoring Frederick Douglass and and the douglas' statute about I don't park. Be somewhere along a prominent place at this waterfront area. Maybe they could each other breaks down at him having you there. Listen we can go if you wanna go leveraged. But I think we look for ways that this open please listen to suggestions. In a lot of good ideas coming out by Rebecca OSS several types. Protest is. A priority in. And get something done. And driving get it done you know to you know committees sometimes commuted death of Eddie thanks so we need to do is organize as group and but then. Defiant what are object there's going to be an aunt and get it done and get people place you can get it done and I think we have a whole cadre of people registered. Court doers. Who are are all being organized. Web resources I think it could be an exciting time I think. And get them air. I'm out of their I've seen of her happy many it was put a could occur we'll yesterday and I know it. Sitting in an air rolled inner I know exactly how she feels like many many years ago when then governor Paterson came down. And promised and it was like 65 million dollars at that time. Do you take dump itself plowed. Now what some while they we should never done that it would have been the largest at that time yeah. Portability and our history we've had done that then governor Paterson gave this money they're building came down. Does. This. Mediation. That it gave new life and it from parcels five and all the Parcells Lotto but in that you from the building was that whole area down air yeah. Life can and I think for people that criticize that I would say. We didn't do everyday average about all across this country there are being shuttered as a retail industry's changing. So many ways there was fortuitous that we did that take them down create new development and there's still some great opportunities that to create even more excitement downtown. This is gonna be really fun to watch BC I'll be registered chamber of commerce Bob Duffy you rest advice now they know our neighbors all the government didn't. That's how women right now do you guys that was. Do you have a great gate and bag and I I apologize for people to listen that is poised to hit a chance to be.