Friday, December 27, 2013

Galloway Gallery: The Acquisition Continues

The last time we reported an addition to the Galloway Gallery of Hudson properties, Harmon's Auto Repair on Third Street between Partition and Union, we labeled it Exhibit 46, so this latest acquisition must be Exhibit 47. Trying to pin down the exact number of properties in Hudson owned by Eric Galloway, his LLC or NFP, can get confusing. Consulting the 2013 Final Assessment Roll, as Gossips did in June, reveals a total of 50 properties owned by T. Eric Galloway (2), Galvan Partners (6), and Galvan Initiatives Foundation (42), but that list doesn't include some of the more recent acquisitions. The reason for the discrepancy is that some parcels thought of as one property appear in the tax rolls as more than one. For example, the vacant lot in the 200 block of Union Street, where 900 Columbia Street is to be "reassembled," is listed in the tax rolls as three different parcels: 215 Union, 217-219 Union, and 216 Partition.

Whether it's 47 or 50-something, another property is rumored to have been acquired by Galloway, Galvan Partners, or Galvan Initiatives Foundation: the COARC building, which occupies most of the south side of the first block of Warren Street.

This building stands as a monument to wrong-headed urban planning. It was meant to be a shopping center, with off-street parking, to lure people back to Hudson from the strip malls that were erupting along Fairview Avenue in the late '60s and early '70s. An entire block of 19th-century buildings, with the exception of one, was demolished to make room for this bad idea.

In 1975, a developer from Schenectady named Howard Goldstock built the one-story complex--totally out of character with the surrounding neighborhood--and dubbed it Parkview Plaza. (It's close to Promenade Hill, dontcha know.) Goldstock promised to fill the plaza with retail businesses--an anchor store at the east end and smaller shops in the remainder, but he never made good on that promise. In 1978, after a lengthy foreclosure proceeding, the building, still unfinished, was sold at public auction on the steps of the Columbia County Courthouse as, to quote the Register-Star from August 3, 1978, "disinterested county employees and visitors strolled by."

The buyer, who paid $200,000 for the three-year-old white elephant, was the Hudson City Savings Institution, the very bank that had originally financed the project. (The Hudson City Savings Institution, chartered in 1850, morphed into Hudson River Bank & Trust in 1998 and was sold to First Niagara in 2005.) William Fisher, who was mortgage operations vice president for HCSI at that time, was quoted in the Register-Star as saying, "We are now pursuing all avenues to try to come up with a viable use [for the building] that will be mutually beneficial to the community and the bank." 

In 1981, COARC established Promenade Hill Center, a day activity program, in the building. Thirty-three years later, one wonders what Galloway's plans for the building might be. 


  1. frightening thoughts of what will appear on lower Warren

  2. I believe the plan was to have the strip mall built to street level but someone came up with the idea (sub-street level) to add off street parking with the results that exist to this day. The Citizens of Hudson were told that the "new stores of the strip plaza" will provide food shopping, etc. within walking distance especially for the Sr. Citizens that will be housed on W.Front St. & Bliss Towers. The rest is history with Hudson City Savings owning the property of South Warren between Front & 1st. Add to that the buildings that were built on the South side of Columbia between Front & 1st that were not sold, but purchased by Hudson City Savings too.
    Now comes a dilemma. Should the property of South Warren 100 block remain as is ( a whole in the ground) or can it be "restored" to a similar state of its former structures.