By Tom Precious
ALBANY -– The Cuomo administration doesn’t just want to draw tourists from New York City to upstate ski slopes, but wouldn’t mind if they travel north to booze it up at bit along “craft beverage’’ tourist trails upstate and on Long Island.
The state’s Empire State Development Corp., the governor’s economic development agency,on Wednesday released an “exploratory’’ Request for Information from transportation companies interested in maybe taking part in a program the state is calling the “I Love NY Get Outta Town Bus.’’
The RFI notes the state is merely trying to “identify options’’ and that the April 30 document does not start some formal bidding process. But the document asks a series of questions from would-be participants interested in a program that envisions including transportation, tickets to events and possibly overnight stays.
The plan calls for trips from New York City to upstate ski slopes, as well as bus rides from Toronto to ski areas in Western New York. It also envisions a craft beverage trail tourist bus line that will take people from, for starters, New York City to the Niagara Escarpment, Finger Lakes, Thousand Islands, Mid-Hudson Valley and Long Island.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo in March announced a ski bus program to take people from New York City to 13 ski areas upstate and from Toronto to six ski areas in Western New York.
Responses by transportation companies are due May 20.