Thursday, October 12, 2017

Building Soon to Be Demolished

At a special meeting on Tuesday, which lasted all of eleven minutes, seven members of the Hudson Development Corporation board voted unanimously to approve the proposal from Redburn Development, the group creating The Wick Hotel at 41 Cross Street, to demolish, at their own expense, a section of the abandoned Kaz warehouse. The section to be demolished, representing 19,000 square feet, is the part of the building closest to The Wick Hotel, as shown in the satellite image above.

The seven members of the HDC present at the meeting were Mayor Tiffany Martin Hamilton, John Gilstrap, Don Moore, Bart Delaney, Common Council president Claudia DeStefano, Alex Petraglia, and Chris Jones. The remaining five members of the board--Duncan Calhoun, Brian Stickles, Bob Rasner, Carolyn Lawrence, and Kristal Heinz--recused themselves and did not attend the meeting owing to conflicts of interest.

Before voting on the issue, the board heard updates on the project from Tom Rossi, one of the Redburn partners. Rossi reported that exterior painting of the hotel had begun, five people that so far had been hired to work at the hotel, the project had spent $120,000 at Herrington's Lumber, and had contracts with Digifabshop to create mill work for the bar area, with Carrie Haddad Gallery to display art on consignment in the hotel, and with Bodhi Spa to manage the hotel's treatment room. 

The demolition of this section of the former Kaz warehouse is expected to begin in about two weeks. One unfortunate consequence of the demolition will be that a massive replica of the City of Hudson and its environs will once again be homeless.

The model was commissioned by Richard Katzman in 2003 to show how the behemoth cement plant proposed for Greenport by St. Lawrence Cement (later Holcim US) would have overshadowed and marginalized Hudson. At that time, the model, complete with a simulated plume from the stack suspended over the city, was displayed in the window of Vincent Mulford Antiques at 417 Warren Street. In 2011, Katzman gave the model to the City of Hudson, and it was entrusted to the Department of Public Works. Apparently, Rob Perry decided to store it in the old Kaz warehouse, but now, because the section of the building where the model resides is about to be demolished, the model needs a new home.

In related news, HDC has issued a new request for proposals (RFP) for the Kaz site. In March 2017, it was announced that a $25 million mixed used redevelopment project proposed by Sustainable Community Associates had been "put on hold until control of the CSX parcel is obtained." Since a new RFP has been issued, it seems we can infer that control of the CSX parcel, which provides the site access to Front Street, has been obtained. The section of the new RFP titled "Development Goals" begins:
HDC is seeking Proposals that are responsive to, but are not limited to, the following development priorities:
  1. Maximizing economic impact through workforce development and job creation;
  2. Providing opportunities for community use and/or recreation;
  3. Visibly and strategically linking the site into the existing fabric of the city;
  4. Creating a transportation oriented development project that reduces car dependency, facilitates ADA access and encourages pedestrian traffic and/or train ridership;
  5. First-rate design and aesthetic quality in harmony of surround buildings & community;
  6. Incorporating sustainable building practices and employing LEED, Passive House, Zero Net Energy or Energy Star features
Proposals should ideally include a mix [of] uses and transit oriented design principles to encourage commuter and tourist traffic via Amtrak as well as parking (covered or uncovered) to accommodate additional business, residential and recreational activity.
The deadline for submitting proposals in November 22, 2017.


  1. This decision to demolish one Kaz structure, and the Kaz RFP, certainly will impact Hudson's DRI (page 34). All this before the first meeting of the Hudson DRI Advisory Committee.

  2. As a resident of Allen Street with property on Cross Street I would like to know who will be managing the demolition and what steps are being taken to protect the neighborhood from the asbestos in the warehouse.

    1. I don't know who is doing the demolition, but I do know, because it involves asbestos, the project has to be registered (with the EPA? with DEC?), and there is a ten-day waiting period before it can commerce. I feel quite confident it will be done in a responsible way.

    2. I'm glad you brought that up. That is a very important question to ask HDC or Code Enforcement, if HDC have no answers.

  3. Carole: With this demolition of the building blocking the Wick's view, does this mean that no future building can take it's place in the future?

    1. No. Based on a preview visit to the hotel a few months ago, I think it's fair to say that they wanted the building demolished not because it blocked the view but because it ruined the view. That's a pretty ugly building. Also, this section of the building is very close to The Wick. There is an interest in reestablishing Montgomery Street, which today exists as a paper street and a narrow passageway between two buildings that were once part of the Kaz "complex." As a consequence, any new building wouldn't be that close.