Wednesday, November 16, 2016

One Parcel, Two Needs

Last Thursday, a plan to build a new headquarters for Greater Hudson Promise Neighborhood was presented to the Planning Board. The plan involves three lots on the 200 block of Columbia Street: 209, 211, and 213. It was acknowledged that Promise Neighborhood does not currently own the lots on which they propose building. Indeed, it seems that Promise Neighborhood is not yet in contract to purchase any of these parcels.

At  the same Planning Board meeting, the proposal to convert 214-216 Warren Street, now the location of the Savoia, into a nine-room hotel was presented. The stumbling block, as it is with so many projects that come before the Planning Board, was parking. The plan includes only three parking spaces behind the building, one of which would be a handicapped parking space. The code requires nine off-street parking spaces, one for each room in the hotel. Before the public hearing on the hotel project, which is scheduled for December 8, the applicant was asked to submit a plan to provide the additional six parking spaces.

Now, 214-216 Warren Street, the once and future Howard Hotel, is virtually right across Prison Alley from 209-211 Columbia Street.

It  would seem logical for the new owners of 214-216 Warren Street to solve their parking problem by simply buying 209-211 Columbia Street--it's still on the market--to create a parking lot for the hotel there. Of course, by doing so, they probably risk bringing down on their heads the same righteous outrage that was visited on the Galvan Foundation last summer when they quadrupled the rent on Promise Neighborhood's current location on South Second Street. But maybe some agreement could be reached.

Promise Neighbor's plans include eight parking spaces along Prison Alley. One of the reasons they want this location is because it is close to where the population served by Promise Neighborhood lives. That doesn't suggest that many people visiting the site will arrive by car. Nor is it likely that Promise Neighborhood will require a lot of space for overnight parking. Might there be a chance for the developers of the Howard Hotel and Promise Neighborhood to work out some kind of deal to share parking space? 

Hudson is only two square miles, and there's a lot going on here now, and more that wants to happen. We need to find ways to share our limited land mass.

1 comment:

  1. Let's get the code amended or grant a variance. Parking shouldn't hold back progress.
    I bet a lot of guests will arrive by train and walk up to the hotel.
    As for the parcel on Columbia St., it would make a great outdoor biergarten in the spring, summer and fall.