News : Not-for-Profit, Dig Safely New York Proposing New Training, Call Center
Dewitt, NY, USA, Dec 1, 2016 -- Dig Safely New York, an East Syracuse-based not-for-profit corporation, wants to build a new call center and training facility in DeWitt.
State law requires homeowners or contractors to call Dig Safely New York at least two working days before digging. Dig Safely's operators then log all the information about the work site and deliver that information to the gas, electrical and phone companies who mark where wires and pipes are located.
Dig Safely, which currently operates a 7,000-square-foot headquarters/call center at 5063 Brittonfield Parkway in DeWitt, wants to close that and build new, larger offices at 6706 Collamer Road in DeWitt.
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The new space would be triple the size of the existing call center - 21,000-square-feet- said Kevin Hopper, Dig Safely's executive director. QPK Design has been hired to design the building.
The new building would include a one-of-a-kind indoor training center where excavators could be trained during the winter season in safe digging/excavating procedures, Hopper said.
The indoor training space would be large enough to accommodate a mini-excavator or bulldozer to help with training.
"Our infrastructure in New York is 'aging, and is going to need a lot of excavation work," Hopper said. "With this new center, we can train people on safe excavation practices in the off-season."
The project is being reviewed by town of DeWitt planners. Hopper said Dig Safely would like to start construction in the spring.
Hopper said a portion of the project will be privately funded. Dig Safely has applied to the state for an economic development grant of up to 20 percent of the cost of the project, through the NYS Consolidated Funding Application program.
The center employs about 40 people, and handled 475,000 excavation requests through the East Syracuse call center in the past year. The organization operates throughout New York, excluding Long Island and New York City.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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