In the State of the State this afternoon, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he wants to build "the largest convention center in the nation" (Why not the world? What are we, pikers?) at Aqueduct race track in Queens, plus modernize and expand the existing Javits convention center in Manhattan, and spend a billion dollars on economic development in Buffalo.
What about Jerry Jennings' long-proposed convention center in downtown Albany? What about the nanotech incubation center proposed for the former Union Station in Albany's downtown, which failed to make the recent cut in regional economic development funding? Albany Councilman Anton Konev, who is no fan of a downtown convention center, also points out (accurately) that the state-funded UAlbany nanotech center is doing more to create jobs in the suburbs than benefit the city of Albany, where the poverty rate is almost as high as Buffalo's. The Common Council is not renowned for promoting job growth in the heart of the city, and the mayor's long-touted relationship with Cuomo has yet to bear fruit. How can Albany miss out when there's pork to be sliced?