Great expectations surround the new GlobalFoundries semiconductor plant, which set to open later this year in Malta, N.Y. But if the company and its high-tech workforce of 1,400 are expected to help revitalize the region’s economy, all those people will need plenty of places to spend their paychecks.
That’s why the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) is planning a new “green” retail center for the employees – next door to where they’ll be working.
NYSERDA owns the 280-acre Saratoga Technology + Energy Park (STEP), which is adjacent to the GlobalFoundries site.
Right now the agency is searching for a LEED-certified developer to build a 30,000 to 40,000 square foot retail space at STEP, which would be filled with conveniences like a deli, coffee shop, gym, dry-cleaner or day-care center.
“We’ve seen a decent amount of growth recently” says Alan Wechsler, a spokesman for NYSERDA.
“We have about 300 workers [at STEP] right now, and with GlobalFoundries moving in, we feel like this is really the right time.”
Wechsler says it’s still too early to know how many jobs the retail center will create, how much it will cost, and what kind of environmentally-friendly features it will have.
“It could be solar power, better insulation techniques; it really depends on what the developer wants to do.”
NYSERDA’s President and CEO, Francis Murray, says in a news release that he believes the retail center will make the site more attractive to prospective tenants, “[We are] proud to have a role in bringing clean-energy businesses to New York State, which is STEP’s mission.”
NYSERDA is currently accepting proposals from developers, and hopes to have the center open within the next year and a half.