The Erie Canal, a 348-mile waterway today, was first completed in 1825. As one of America’s most treasured historical resources and most successful public works project, the Canal played a pivotal role in making New York the Empire State. Boom towns sprung up because this narrow ribbon-of-water trade route linked Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Utica, and Albany with New York City and lowered transportation costs by 90 percent. Once trodden by mule teams, the old canal ran through downtown Rochester. By no means less historically significant, the 20th Century version of the canal runs just beyond the northeast side of the campus and is now a scenic pathway for bicyclists and hikers, part of a recreational network that makes up the Canalway and Greenway Trail.