Skip Navigation
Regional News
Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks to a packed house at the Downhill Grill on Sunday (Photo:  Mark Kurtz)
Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks to a packed house at the Downhill Grill on Sunday (Photo: Mark Kurtz)

Cuomo gets "Santa" welcome in Saranac Lake

Listen to this story
Hundreds of people turned out for a packed celebration in Saranac Lake on Sunday as Governor Andrew Cuomo visited to talk about the North Country's win in the Regional Economic Development Council competition.

Cuomo was received with repeated ovations. He praised the North Country for being the only region to have won extra funding through the REDC program three years in a row.

Hear this

Download audio

Share this


Explore this

Reported by

Brian Mann
Adirondack Bureau Chief

"Investing in the Bombardier, Plattsburgh airport, Ogdensburg Bridge Authority, Whiteface Memorial Highway, you add them all together and you see activity all across the North Country," Cuomo said.

Saranac Lake has seen a huge taxpayer investment in recent weeks, including $7 million to promote two hotel projects and a $35-million commitment to help revitalize Trudeau Institute, the village's historic bio-research lab, which is forming a new partnership with Clarkson University in Potsdam.

Saranac Lake Mayor Clyde Rabideau said his village is poised for an economic "renaissance" (Photo: Mark Kurtz)
Saranac Lake Mayor Clyde Rabideau said his village is poised for an economic "renaissance" (Photo: Mark Kurtz)
Saranac Lake Mayor Clyde Rabideau said those dollars will spark more private sector investment.

"It's a renaissance, it's a rebirth, it's a new epoch of progress and prosperity for Saranac Lake."

State officials say the Regional Council program has funneled more than 270 million dollars in public investment to the North Country over the last three years.  Some of that funding, however, was repackaged from existing state programs.

Gary Douglas, co-chair of the North Country's Council, says the program has begun to leverage more investment that has been lacking in rural New York for decades.

Fred Roedel (at right) is redeveloping the Hotel Saranac in the heart of the village, a project expected to cost roughly $13 million.  He was a guest of honor at Sunday's event.  (Photo:  Mark Kurtz
Fred Roedel (at right) is redeveloping the Hotel Saranac in the heart of the village, a project expected to cost roughly $13 million. He was a guest of honor at Sunday's event. (Photo: Mark Kurtz
"It's extremely rare [for major investments to be made in the Adirondacks] if we think back how often does this sort of thing happen. And I like to think it also at least is in part a reflection of confidence by investors in areas like the Adirondacks because of what's happening."

The two hotel projects in Saranac Lake are expected to include at least 20 million dollars in private capital.  But at times, Sunday's celebration also seemed like a warm-up for Governor Cuomo's re-election campaign.  One person in the crowd chanted "four more years."  And Mayor Rabideau introduced the the governor this way.

"Ladies and gentlemen, Santa is in the house!" 

Developers of the Hotel Saranac say they've already begun the lengthy effort to refurbish the historic downtown structure.  A plan for a new waterfront resort on Lake Flower is more controversial and still faces review by local and state officials.

Visitor comments

on:

NCPR is supported by:

This is a Visitor-Supported website.