Thursday, March 30, 2017

The Future of the Kaz Warehouses

The Kaz Redevelopment Project was on the agenda for Tuesday's Hudson Development Corporation meeting, and before the board went into executive session to discuss its next move, some information about the current status of the project was revealed.

It will be recalled that the CSX property, which sits between the the Kaz warehouses and South Front Street, bordered by Montgomery Street (a paper street) at the north and the municipal parking lot for the train station at the south, has become a "must have" for the redevelopment of the Kaz warehouse site. In December, Senator Charles Schumer was in Hudson to pledge his support and assistance in getting CSX to part with that property.

A little background: The City of Hudson gave CSX that parcel in the early 2000s, in exchange for land on the waterfront that enabled the expansion of riverfront park south to the northern edge of what is now Colarusso's property. The land that is now Rick's Point formerly belonged to CSX. Also in the early 2000s, the Hudson Planning Board foreshadowed the current initiative to protect Hudson's architectural character by banning formula businesses by rejecting CSX's proposal to build its formula blue and white metal sided maintenance crew facility on the site. The little hip roofed brick building, which echoes the design of the 1874 train station and the "comfort station" in riverfront park, is the result of months of CSX working with the Planning Board to create an acceptable design.

Back to the story: It seems that the City of Hudson and HDC, through the intervention of Schumer or some other means, have been in conversation with CSX about this parcel. CSX is willing to give it up in exchange for another parcel, but the parcel CSX wants is not one the City or HDC owns. It belongs to A. Colarusso & Son. At Tuesday's HDC meeting, Sheena Salvino, HDC executive director, explained the new plan: CSX stays where it is but gives up some of the land around the building so that the redevelopment of the Kaz property can have access to Front Street. Some improvements to the CSX site--landscaping, perhaps--are also part of the concept.

The new proposal has not yet been presented to CSX, and the HDC board went into executive session to discuss a strategy for doing so. If HDC is able to acquire some of the CSX property, that land would be folded into the Kaz parcel, and the RFP (request for proposal) process, which a year ago resulted in the Sustainable Community Associates proposal, would start all over again.


  1. Amtrak's "running" rails could easily come in third, Kaz becomes a station stop. The city then reclaims all the property west of 3d. When South Front extends to Mt Marino, call Hilton.

  2. I quaver to think that the fate of the waterfront is being decided privately in executive sessions of the HDC.

    I always reminded of the time the HDC, following an executive session, suddenly sold off the Meeker property at North Front Street after announcing they'd hold onto it. The City knew for 30 years that the property's corner lot, opposite the Wastewater Treatment Plant, would be needed for a proper sewer separation. The sale happened only months after the same issue was discussed in the City's Long Term Control Plan for Combined Sewers.

    This year we learned that the HDC is involved with a new scheme to put housing on this same lot needed for sewer separation.

    I guess I'm old fashioned, because I prefer it when the City conducts our idiotic planning openly, rather than learning - and only too late - that a non-profit is conducted bad planning in private.