Monday, April 7, 2014

Back to 1965: The Oakdale Neighborhood

On Saturday, Gossips began recounting the analyses of Hudson neighborhoods contained in the 1965 Comprehensive Development Plan. As noted then, the study focused on the condition and uses of the buildings. The City of Hudson adopted its zoning in 1968, no doubt informed by the assessments and recommendations of this document. Following the qualitative order of the neighborhoods in the Comprehensive Development Plan--from best to worst--the next neighborhood is the Oakdale Neighborhood.

The Oakdale Neighborhood
The Oakdale (or Oakdale-Underhill) neighborhood is directly south of the High School neighborhood, but of different character. One and two-family homes, well-spaced on moderately-sized lots, are within easy walking distance of schools and recreation, shops and employment. Many of the old Hudson families still live here.
The neighborhood is predominantly residential, although containing a number of commercial and industrial uses particularly along Sixth Street.
Within this neighborhood there were 528 housing units. The low vacancy ratio (3.2%) attested to the desirability of the neighborhood. However, only forty percent of the housing units were in standard condition, one-quarter were in intermediate condition, and one-third were substandard. Structural conditions were worst bordering Columbia Street and the Boston and Albany Railroad and some of the blocks are so badly blighted as to require clearance and redevelopment. Others can be improved to standard condition through rehabilitation and conservation.
Most of the northern part of the neighborhood is in good condition. Vigorous code enforcement is suggested (after adoption of housing and building codes) for most of the area, with spots of incipient blight corrected by rehabilitation and conservation.
Oakdale Recreation Area, the largest, best-equipped, and most used park in the City, is largely within this neighborhood. The athletic fields of the John L. Edwards Elementary School are more conveniently located for Oakdale residents than those of North Bay. In addition, Oakdale contains the inadequate and little-used Junior High playground.
The "inadequate and little-used Junior High playground" must have been behind 401 State Street, what is now used as a parking lot. Built in 1913-1914 as the high school, 401 State Street became the junior high school after the new high school--the Colonial Revival school building on Harry Howard Avenue--was built in the 1930s.

The Oakdale Neighborhood c. 2012--Courtesy Bing Maps

1 comment:

  1. I can't wait for Carole to get down to the description of my hood soon to be, which is at the "bottom" of the heap. The suspense is almost unendurable. Carole is clever in doing this serially. It gets folks to turn into the next "episode" as it were. :)