Friday, April 8, 2011

HPC Makes Its Decision

This morning, after brief deliberation, the Historic Preservation Commission granted a certificate of appropriateness to the project proposed by Galvan Partners for the corner of Union and First streets. Two issues were discussed before the HPC voted: materials and the placement of the garage door in the "carriage house" at the First and Cherry Alley. 

On the issue of materials, Julian Adams, community liaison coordinator for the Certified Local Government Program at the State Historic Preservation Office, had been asked if SHPO had taken a position on the use of Hardiplank, the siding proposed for this project, for new construction in historic districts. His response was that SHPO considered Hardiplank acceptable for new construction, provided it was smooth surfaced not faux wood grain. 

On the issue of the garage door, HPC member David Voorhees said he'd spoken with a number of people who were not bothered by having the garage door face the street instead of the alley. Mark Greenberg, attorney for Galvan Partners, stressed that, although they had an alternative plan for the carriage house which had the garage opening onto the alley, "we strongly, strongly want to do the house with the garage door on the street."

The four members of the HPC present--Tom Swope (chair), Voorhees, Tony Thompson, and Jane Smith--voted unanimously to grant a certificate of appropriateness to the project, with these stipulations:
  • The Hardiplank used would have a smooth finish and be painted.
  • The sidewalk on First Street would be continuous from Cherry Alley to Union Street.
  • The garage door used for the carriage house would be historic in appearance.
The Zoning Board of Appeals holds its public hearing on the project on April 20 at 6:00 p.m.


  1. Today on CNN news I saw a report about a woman in - ? - who lives in a development that obviously has 'snout' houses. She likes to use her garage as a social place and so sits there at a table knitting, having coffee and socializing with her friends. The neighborhood has objected, and its association's lawyer has sent her a letter asking her to desist. When she didn't, they sent her a fine which she is refusing to pay. This will be interesting - if she wins, then all the snout house people can open up their garage doors and sit there amongst their stuff and be visible to everyone passing by. It may be social - but visually - ugh. If she looses maybe architects should think twice about snout houses.

  2. I'm sorry but this decision to allow a garage door on a main street - especially when the alley is right around the corner - is just WRONG.

    Hudson is one of the few towns with her alleys intact.
    That should be respected over and above money or power or whatever influenced this ill advised resolve.