Ground was broken Friday on a facility in a rural area of DeWitt that’s expected to bring more of Hollywood to Onondaga County. In fact, the Central New York Hub for Emerging Nano Industries already has a tenant.
During the state of the county address earlier this year, California-based film and TV company “The Film House” announced it will relocate its headquarters, production, post production, and distribution operations to the facility. President and CEO Ryan Johnson was on hand for the groundbreaking.
"Not only will we get to work with this first kind of educational institution that will drive production and innovations globally, it will help train and develop our future workforce so we can continue to grow in Syracuse and build the film industry in Upstate New York."
Lieutenant Governor Robert Duffy was among the officials turning over the first symbolic shovels of dirt.
Justin Steele is director of the upcoming film “The Opium War,” which will be filmed and produced in Central New York using the hub’s resources. But Onondaga County executive Joanie Mahoney says the hub goes beyond the film industry.
15 million dollars in state money will build and equip the facility at the Collamer Business Park, but officials say that should leverage 150 million dollars in private investment over seven years. The project is expected to create 350 permanent, high-tech jobs and 150 construction jobs.
WHAT'S NEXT FOR LT. GOV. DUFFY?
Lt. Governor Robert Duffy's stop in Syracuse Friday for the nano hub groundbreaking may be one of his last official trips as the state's second in command. It's been known since early this year that he's not running for re-election. Duffy, who turns 60 in August, is the former Mayor and Police Chief of Rochester. He previously served as a police officer in his hometown, working his way up the ranks from 1976 until he was appointed chief in 1998, a role he'd retire from in 2005 to seek the democratic nomination for Mayor.