Saturday, September 17, 2011

Supersize That?

The houses at the corner of First and Union appear to have achieved their full height. If they were skyscrapers in Manhattan, someone would fly a flag from the top to signal the achievement, but no such tradition exists here in Hudson. The question remains: Are they taller than what the Historic Preservation Commission actually approved or not?

When the question of the buildings' height was first raised a week ago, a member of the Historic Preservation Commission volunteered to check the elevations submitted to the HPC to see if the houses being built were in compliance with those drawings. Subsequently, Gossips learned that it was believed the height of the second-story ceilings had been increased from 8'6" to 10' after the HPC had granted the project a certificate of appropriateness. When Gossips shared this information with the same HPC member, hoping to get confirmation or denial of this claim, as well as learn the outcome of the check of the elevations, Gossips was told that Cheryl Roberts, attorney to the HPC, had advised that any concerns about the houses should be directed to Code Enforcement Officer Peter Wurster. 

So the question remains: Did the Historic Preservation Commission approve the plans for these buildings knowing that they would be significantly taller than the adjacent building, or was the HPC--like the public--misled by the rendering which shows the buildings to be of the same height as that building? And here's another question: Why are members of the HPC being advised against providing an answer to the first question?    

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