Tuesday, July 20, 2010

What's Happening at Riverfront Park?

Reports have been streaming in about the activities at Henry Hudson Riverfront Park. The City of Hudson acquired the property immediately south of the park from CSX a year or so ago. CSX left a trailer on the property, and the arrangement was that CSX would pay rent to the City as long as the trailer remained. Word has it that a few months ago, CSX stopped paying the rent, so last week Mayor Scalera ordered DPW to clean up the site and prepare to expand the park, which they are doing--with no apparent plan and no restraint. There have been reports that they are cutting trees and bushes indiscriminantly, clear-cutting the shoreline. It's also been suggested that they are bringing fill from the Hudson River Knitting Mill site (a.k.a. River Lofts or the Bentley Meeker buildings) and the wastewater treatment plant site across town and using it for the park expansion. It's been reported--in a comment on this blog and elsewhere--that the fill contains metal and other scrap material.

Today a major cause of concern is the railroad trestle across the embayment on this property--the only surviving bit of a spur that once went down closer to the river, possibly to the old gasification works. Previously hidden by trees and brush, the trestle is now exposed and cordoned off with caution tape. Patrick Doyle, who envisioned the trestle as the centerpiece of an outdoor railroad museum at the waterfront, is concerned about the City's plans for the trestle and its survival. He shared this picture, taken a few years ago by the late Bob Ponkos, of the trestle and the inlet.

There's a Common Council meeting tonight at 7:00--a chance to ask for details about the plans to expand the park.


  1. Carole, I've been by there the last two mornings and can confirm the "clean-up." It does look a bit indiscriminate, but as of now I wouldn't call it clear-cutting. Please do keep us apprised of "plans" -- if any. Remember the Chicken Shack! --peter

  2. It looks great down there. Thank you whomever is responsible. How did they ever get the other park built without carole and company telling them how to do it?

  3. Yes, there is fresh dirt at the tip of that cleared area. It actually looks pretty good, but I can't speak from authority because I don't clearly know what it looked like before. Whether it came from on-site or from Meeker I could not say. Saw Meeker today, and there is fresh dirt there too. But I do worry about what is in that dirt. Noticed from my last taken image at Meeker that there are some fresh broken windows and there has been some "renovation"? Nothing major noticed from the outside. "Stuff" has been removed. Where did it go?