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Press Release

NYCEDC Announces RISE : NYC Technology Installation at Rockaway Sandy-Impacted Small Business

Jun 23 2017

QUEENS, NY—New York Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) yesterday celebrated the installation of a natural daylighting system at 101 Deli, a Rockaway-based small business severely impacted by Superstorm Sandy. The system was provided free of charge by NYC Daylighting and made possible by the City’s Resiliency Innovations for a Stronger Economy (RISE : NYC) program, which provides small businesses affected by Superstorm Sandy with free resiliency improvements to help them prepare for future storms and the impacts of climate change.

This installation is the first of many under the RISE : NYC program, which leverages innovative technologies to improve the resiliency of NYC’s small businesses, while strengthening New York City’s long-term resiliency efforts. The program will also help to strengthen the City’s small business community and emerging tech entrepreneurs.

NYC Daylighting is a family owned, Rockaway-based and Sandy-impacted small business. The Solatube Daylighting System they deploy is a RISE : NYC-winning technology designed to capture, transfer, and deliver natural light into building interiors. The system captures sunlight via a rooftop dome and uses reflective tubing to channel and disperse the light throughout a room. This daylighting technology reduces reliance on electricity, significantly decreases energy costs for businesses, and continues to provide lighting in the case of an outage. NYC Daylighting is the first out of the 11 RISE : NYC winners to install their technology. RISE : NYC funding will enable NYC Daylighting to install their technology in a total of 30 Sandy-impacted small businesses.

"While protecting our planet, resilient technologies offer critical economic benefits to businesses, including the many small businesses that make up the backbone of New York City's economy. Thanks to innovative companies like NYC Daylighting -- a Rockaway-based, family-owned start up -- dozens of businesses affected by Sandy will soon be saving as much as $500 a month on their energy bills, while also cutting harmful pollution. Congratulations, and keep the ideas coming," said Mayor Bill de Blasio.

“The installation of smart technology by NYC Daylighting in local small businesses marks great progress in the City’s efforts to increase resiliency following Superstorm Sandy,” said NYCEDC President and CEO James Patchett. “The RISE : NYC program is a proven success because its innovative model not only provides small businesses with the technology they need to withstand climate change, but also fosters growth in local companies looking to provide smart, urban solutions. We are excited to seeing deployment of more winning technologies in the coming months.”

“Small businesses are a vital part of our City’s economy, which is why we are committed to ensuring their resiliency as part our OneNYC goals,” said Jainey Bavishi, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Recovery and Resiliency. “By connecting small businesses and communities with innovative resiliency solutions we are strengthening our communities to be able to thrive now and in the future. We are excited to see the launch of NYC Daylighting in the Rockaways, and we look forward to the continued implementation of RISE : NYC selected technologies citywide.”

"NYC Daylighting is excited to help improve operations of local fellow businesses that were affected by Hurricane Sandy, with Solatube Natural Lighting,” said NYC Daylighting Owner Michael Shea. “We also thank the City of New York and the NYCEDC for this opportunity."

Launched in January 2014, RISE : NYC began as a global competition to identify innovative and cost-effective resilient technologies. The City received nearly 200 applications from over 20 countries around the world. The 11 selected technologies will share up to $28 million via the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Community Development Block Grant-Disaster Recovery program to install their technologies at Sandy-impacted small businesses across New York City.

Another RISE : NYC winning technology, goTenna, is now seeking applications from Sandy-impacted small businesses interested in upgrading their telecommunications resiliency. GoTenna will provide qualifying businesses with free devices that enable connectivity when cell connection is down. Interested businesses should apply here.

RISE : NYC complements some of the long-term projects that the City is studying and working to implement alongside stakeholders like the U.S. Army Corps, including studying projects such as building levees on Staten Island’s East Shore, wetlands and living shorelines in Tottenville and Howard Beach, dunes in Breezy Point, tidal barriers in Coney Island Creek, and storm surge barriers at the mouth of Newtown Creek and the Gowanus Canal. RISE : NYC is also included in “A Stronger, More Resilient New York,” the 2013 comprehensive plan put forth as part of the City’s Special Initiative for Rebuilding and Resiliency. Additional program information can be found at the RISE : NYC website at

New York City Economic Development Corporation creates shared prosperity across New York City’s five boroughs by strengthening neighborhoods and creating good jobs. NYCEDC works with and for communities to provide them with the resources they need to thrive, and we invest in projects that increase sustainability, support job growth, develop talent, and spark innovation to strengthen the City’s competitive advantage. To learn more about our work and initiatives, please visit us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.