Wednesday, March 1, 2017

What's to Become of the Kaz Warehouses

Last week, there was a forum about Hudson's need for affordable housing. Yesterday, the Hudson Development Corporation (HDC) Board of Directors met in executive session for more than an hour to discuss the $25 million mixed use development proposed by Sustainable Community Associates--a project expected to have an affordable housing component. This morning, HDC executive director Sheena Salvino issued a press release about the status of the project, which tells us basically nothing we didn't already know. The press release is published below, uncorrected.

Montgomery Street Redevelopment Project on Hold 
Until CSX Lot Secured
Hudson Development Corporation, nonprofit local development corporation, and Ohio based developer, Sustainable Community Associates, in a joint statement have announced that the mixed use redevelopment of the former KAZ Warehouse on Montgomery Street will be put on hold until control of the CSX parcel is obtained. 
HDC released a Request for Proposals in March 2016 for the redevelopment of the abandoned warehouse with the purposes to return the property to the tax rolls and create jobs in Hudson. Sustainable Community Associates answered that call with an ambitious project proposal calling for a mix of commercial, retail and housing.
"At the kickoff meeting in May 2016, the members of HDC, SCA, and City of Hudson officials met to discuss the many moving parts of this proposal and the thresholds that would have to be met before SCA's shovels could go in the ground," says HDC Executive Director, Sheena Salvino. "The key component being the acquisition of the CSX parcel which offers access and frontage via Front Street."
Early and often contact with the CSX Real Estate Office in Florida was made, but it was not until Minority Leader, Senator Charles Schumer got involved in December of 2016. "We were thrilled that Senator Schumer saw the value of this project for Hudson and was able to lend his support," says Mayor Tiffany Hamilton.
Since December, CSX has reached out and we are looking for ways to meet the needs of both interests, said Mayor Hamilton.
SCA Partner, Ben Ezinga stated the "We are optimistic that CSX will work with HDC and the City so that the full site will be available for redevelopment." He continues, "Without that parcel, our project cannot be fully realized."
"Negotiation for the sale of the warehouse will always be stalled if HDC cannot gain site control of the CSX parcel," says Board President Duncan Calhoun. "We feel we are well positioned to obtain the site control and we will continue to prioritize the acquisition so that the full proposal submitted by SCA can move forward."
Gossips Note: "Ohio based developer" Sustainable Community Associates was founded in 2001, when its three partners were students at Oberlin College. One of the partners, Ben Ezinga is a native of Columbia County and currently lives in Hudson.


  1. Would it violate the sanctity of the Executive Session to update the public on the status of the $25 million?

    We must infer from the HDC statement that its status is unchanged, but that's not the only way to interpret the Board President's pronouncement.

  2. Isn't there a sale of City owned property involved also? Any word on that?

    1. You may be thinking of the possible sale or swap of part of the train station parking lot, which is owned and maintained by the City. The mayor is the only person who has ever made public mention of that, and she did so in an interview on WGXC. Who knows? Everything, we are led to believe, now hinges on getting the CSX parcel.