NYPA grants $2.2 million for energy efficiency improvements to Clarkson’s Old Main building in Potsdam
Tuesday, October 2, 2012 - 11:31 am

POTSDAM -- The New York Power Authority will provide $2.2 million of funding to Clarkson University for energy efficiency improvements at the institution’s Old Main Building on its downtown Potsdam campus.

The improvements are part of a renovation, expected to begin in 2013, that will transform the century-old building into a “green” data, research and education center for the Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries, a think tank devoted to comprehensive real-time monitoring of the changing character of river environments.

The total project is expected to cost $8 million.

The institute is a subsidiary of Clarkson University, with operations in Beacon—in the Hudson Valley—and in Potsdam.

“Clarkson University is proud to be developing one of the first green data centers in New York and even prouder of the environmental research that will be forthcoming,” said Anthony G. Collins, Clarkson University president. “It’s particularly fitting that this exciting project will

also help extend the life of this beautiful architectural landmark.”

On Sept. 24, the NYPA Trustees redirected $2.2 million from the remainder of a $10 million grant originally designated for construction of a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) building for the Beacon Institute at Denning’s Point State Park in Beacon, on property owned by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservations (OPRHP). The grant was approved by the NYPA trustees in 2004.

“I was heartened to hear the news earlier this year that this beautiful example of Potsdam Sandstone will be restored to academic life as a new green research center, but I am even happier now to think that the Power Authority will have a hand in the process,” said Judge Eugene L. Nicandri, a NYPA trustee and Massena resident.

When plans for the facility’s Beacon site changed, OPRHP petitioned NYPA to redirect some of the funding toward green building technologies for the Beacon Institute’s Old Main Building at Clarkson’s Potsdam campus. The balance of the funds will be used by OPRHP for ongoing implementation of green building technologies at the Denning’s Point site.

“We are very pleased to work with Clarkson University on the adaptive re-use of this beautiful old building and the incorporation of distinctly contemporary green materials and features, which are consistent with the statewide sustainability goals of Governor Cuomo,” said Gil C. Quiniones, NYPA president and CEO.