Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand visits with NY-BEST at Eastman Business Park

Dec 15, 2012

After a tour of Eastman Business Park on Friday, U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand said she was urging the Department of Defense to partner with an advanced battery and energy storage project planned for the industrial park.

In a letter to Frank Kendall, undersecretary of defense for acquisition, Gillibrand, D-N.Y., invited Kendall to visit the park, in addition to Brookhaven National Laboratory and the State University of New York at Stony Brook, both on Long Island.

She pointed out that the New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology Consortium, known by its acronym NY-BEST, is planning to locate its commercialization center at Eastman Business Park.

NY-BEST is a group of more than 100 companies, including leading suppliers of military batteries, working to grow the energy storage industry in New York.

The NY-BEST facility would foster development of emerging technologies. State officials said the energy storage business sector could create more than 11,000 jobs in the next 10 years.

“The center will provide unique prototyping and testing capabilities for large-scale battery systems,” Gillibrand wrote.

It was the first visit to the park for Gillibrand, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. She said the Defense Department “would benefit greatly” from the resources at the former Kodak Park.

“I think if they could have some of their research and development happening right here in this business park, they would have extraordinary opportunities to develop the technologies our war fighters desperately need,” she said.

“I’m going to tell them what I saw and I’m going to encourage them to come see it for themselves.”

Eastman Business Park, which now has 37 tenants, is a 1,200-acre industrial park with extensive manufacturing infrastructure and resources. The Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council has listed development of the park as a top priority.

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Source: Democrat and Chronicle