August 22, 2019
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo recently announced $6.4 million in grants from the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation, in addition to $4 million in state funding, which will support ongoing improvements to the Genesee Valley Greenway State Park and the Niagara Shoreline Trail in Western New York. The projects will help make key connections to the Empire State Trail.
Near Buffalo, four projects totaling $4.1 million are planned for the Niagara Shoreline Trail, including:
The Wilson Foundation is providing a grant of $1.4 million to support this work, with another $2.7 million provided by the State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, State Department of Transportation, the New York Power Authority, the Niagara River Greenway and the town of Lewiston.
"This support from the Wilson Foundation, coupled with new state funding, will help repair, enhance and expand recreational opportunities on these multi-use paths in two beautiful parts of western New York, which Ralph Wilson loved so much," Governor Cuomo said. "His legacy will strengthen tourism, increase safety for bicyclists and hikers, and further revitalize communities that are better connected."
"As an avid bicyclist, I know how important this significant funding will be as we continue our efforts to improve connections to the Empire State Trail," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "We are fortunate that Ralph Wilson's spirit lives on through generous philanthropic efforts. In celebrating his legacy, we are grateful to the Foundation's commitment towards our regional trail systems. These investments will expand recreational opportunities, and boost the tourism industry and economy of Western New York."
Both the Genesee Valley and Niagara projects will strengthen significant connections to the Empire State Trail, a statewide project announced in January 2017 by Governor Cuomo. Scheduled to be completed by the end of 2020, the Empire State Trail will be a continuous 750-mile route spanning the state from New York City to Canada and Buffalo to Albany, creating the longest multi-use state trail in the nation.