Thursday, August 23, 2012

Third Time's the Charm

Yesterday, Ward Hamilton posted a comment on the post "Another Vision" that included a link to his blog, where he had published a rendering for a third design for 67-71 North Fifth Street--the one to be presented to the Historic Preservation Commission at their workshop meeting tomorrow morning. That rendering is reproduced here with Hamilton's permission.

God is in the details, but this design is certainly closer to what the Historic Preservation Commission has been asking for, which raises the question of why it took three tries to get there. Certainly the Galvan people have been before the HPC often enough to know what will pass muster with the guardians of our architectural heritage and what will not. Contrary to the opinion of some, the decisions of the HPC are not arbitrary, unpredictable, or driven by personal agendas or personal taste. The HPC is charged with protecting Hudson's irreplaceable cultural resources and preserving the diverse and authentic character of Hudson's architecture, and the members of the HPC are carrying out the task they are charged with. Sometimes the Galvan people seem to be deliberately recalcitrant, creating opportunities for people who know little about historic preservation and care even less to rail against the HPC for standing in the way of progress and development.


  1. Two minor observations:

    1. In the photos of the house from the 1930s or 1940s that Gossips posted previously, there is a bush on the right facing the house.....and today there is a bush still there (see the contemporary photo of the house). The bush though has now disappeared from the architect's rendering. Is the bush that stands there today the very same bush one sees in the 1930s/40s photo? If so, is the bush heirloom? Or heritage? Is it an ancient lilac, hydrangea, hemlock, yew or old English rose? You think I may jest, but perhaps our arborist/Alderman Marston could give that bush a look and a think. Just don't bring it up with "Doc Donahue"; he may (justifiably) have a conniption.

    2. There is a U-Haul truck in the architect's rendering!!! Is this where the laundromat's U-Haul trucks are currently being parked, in part? I just find that detail to be so hilarious. Will the house be surrounded by ersatz U-Hauls? Will the lawn be littered with Galvan tractors, bricks and other construction detritus, much like the lot near the General Worth House? Will Galvan really finish the project? Or just finish it up to the last 95%, then just leave it in limbo, like it has done with other current projects which are near completion, but are suddenly strangely dormant?

  2. At least this rendering looks more like the one Bob Mechling produced and much closer to the original house. As you say, why did it take three tries to come up with that. Hope the meeting went well this am.