All of North Bay is landlocked by the railroad. Neither filled nor channeled, most of the Bay is presently unusable. The City of Hudson is presently reclaiming approximately four acres at the northern City line through a sanitary land fill operation. Access is provided by a narrow road, the continuation of Second Street, which cuts through the vacant lands owned by the New York State Volunteer Firemen's Home. The road skirts the swamp, and most of the land west of it is underwater. At the southern edge of the bay are found an unhealthy and unsanitary mixture of uses: residences, factories (Foster Refrigerator and Hudson Valley Mills), a colony of fisherman's shacks, raw sewage outfalls, and junk yards.
Proposals. The Plan for Streets and Traffic Circulation proposes the eventual creation of a major road serving all of Columbia County and beyond, which will run in a north-south direction near the river. This road is envisioned as an improvement and extension of Third Street. East of this Third Street extension in the North Bay area, the Plans calls for residential, recreation, and semi-public uses; west of the road, primarily industrial uses. . . .
A city-wide sewage treatment plant has been planned for a site directly north of Dock Street. From this site, it could easily serve any new industrial development in the North Bay. A new Department of Public Works garage (the present structure will be demolished when New York State constructs a boat launch facility) could be located in this vicinity.
The fishing village, located north of the end of Front Street, adjacent to the sewer outfall, is unsanitary and dilapidated. These shacks, together with the dilapidated structures north of Dock Street, should be removed or relocated. Middle Ground Flats, the small islands on the other side of the river channel, are lying fallow. While this location is outside the City limits, the possibility of developing them for recreation and camping sites should be investigated. When pollution is cleared from the Hudson River, and it becomes suitable for bathing, these islands would become delightful beaches. Until then, they are well-located to serve the more limited function of sites for camping and fishing, and as potential relocation sites for the fishing shacks now along the Hudson shore.It would appear that, almost fifty years ago, planners already had the Furgary Boat Club in their sights.
Today, instead of seeing the North Bay as good for nothing but industrial uses and being the future site of the sewage treatment plant, Hudson's LWRP (Local Waterfront Revitalization Program) envisions conservation and recreational uses for the area.
The Columbia Land Conservancy has proposed transforming the former landfill and the surrounding open space into a public recreation and natural area, with a trail network that would connect Hudson with "an expansive tract of open space and natural habitat, stretching from Charles Williams Park, through the 714-acre Greenport Conservation Area and northward on to Harrier Hill Park."
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