The ribbon cutting comes amid a report from the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council which states the Eastman Business Park is its top priority in terms of business and job growth in the nine county Rochester region. The Council is in the process of finalizing a plan that it will submit to the State requesting economic funds. Last year it received just under $70 million.
Cerion Enterprises was formed in 2007. It began operations out of a garage before moving to a small space in the Eastman Business Park. Now it can expand its manufacturing in a larger building. "We've doubled our capacity, doubled the amount of space that we have here," said Cerion VP of Manufacturing Doug Singer.
The company has developed a highly reactive nanotechnology, currently used to create a diesel fuel catalyst. "The value to Cerion for having Eastman Business Park here is it's a one stop shopping facility for a growing company or a start up company to be able to come in, there's space available, there's logistics support available, utilities, it's a great complex," said Singer.
Kelly Mandarano is the Communications Director for Eastman Business Park and said Cerion has taken advantage of the Park's assets. "They have been such a great example of a company that has been able to come in, utilize some of our under used assets, and help them speed their product to market without the capital investment it would've taken on their part to build out labs, space," she said.
Mark Peterson is the President and C.E.O. of the Greater Rochester Enterprise and a member of the Finger Lakes Economic Council. He said Eastman Park, with its Kodak roots, is uniquely positioned to attract and retain high tech companies. "It's our top priority because it has both great opportunity and great potential risk," he said.
Peterson said the risk comes from Kodak's uncertain future, while the opportunity comes from the Park's industrial infrastructure, which is there because of Kodak. "There really is an opportunity to grow new jobs, but there's also a threat if Kodak no longer operates the Park and there's not someone to step into it, that could be a challenge," he said.
The Finger Lakes Economic Council will finalize its plan September 5 and then send it off to the State for analysis. Funding amounts could be decided as early as October.
The public can view the Council's extended plan and provide feedback here. The meeting for final approval of the plan takes place on September 4.
You can take an aerial tour of the former Eastman Business Park by clicking here.