Monday, March 26, 2018

News from the DPW

The Public Works and Parks Committee of the Common Council, shifted from the fourth Wednesday of the month to the third Wednesday of the month and truncated because the third Wednesday of the month is when the ZBA meeting is scheduled, took place last Wednesday, March 21. When it began at 5:30, there was no quorum; only committee chair, Eileen Halloran; public works commissioner, Peter Bujanow; DPW superintendent, Rob Perry; and committee member Rich Volo were present. After a few minutes of uncertainty, though, committee member Shershah Mizan arrived, and the meeting went forward. Here are some things of interest learned at the meeting.
  • The Upper Union Street Green Stormwater Retrofit project is ready to move ahead. Back in December 2015, the City of Hudson received a grant for $248,000 to install "stormwater tree planters to intercept rainfall and prevent it from entering the combined sewer system along Union Street." This was to be a pilot project which would help the City decide "where to install similar green infrastructure practices throughout the community."
  • The bid documents for the controversial Front Street storm water separation project have been submitted to the Department of Environmental Conservation for review.
  • The annual drinking water quality report for 2017 is available and can be viewed here
  • The little building located in what was once the Academy Hill playground has gotten some attention from DPW. Months ago, Gossips reported that the rear corner of the building was crumbling. On Wednesday, Perry told the committee that DPW had "reinforced the [south] wall and framed out the opening with supports, as well as installed a tarp to keep the elements out." The measures seem to designed to prevent further deterioration, but there was no talk of plans to restore the building.

  • Perry also reported that two documents relating to the Ferry Street bridge--the Bridge Inventory Form and the Phase IA Literature Review and Archeological Sensitivity Assessment--have been submitted to the Department of Transportation for referral to the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO). The Bridge Inventory Form makes a rather remarkable revelation: "The original construction documents for [the Ferry Street] bridge indicate that it was fabricated from components taken from the 'Albany Freight Bridge'; the earliest span which crossed the river at Albany, completed in 1866. This bridge was taken down c. 1902, and was replaced by the current bridge, occupying the same site and piers. Images of [the Albany Freight Bridge] suggest that the materials were sourced from the lengthy bridge approaches."
Erratum: Now that the little building on Prospect Street is getting some much needed attention and help in surviving, it's as good a time as any to admit that it probably was never a firehouse. The idea that it had been was first suggested by Perry, who spoke of it as a firehouse again on Wednesday. Accepting that as fact, Gossips concluded that it was the firehouse of Fred W. Jones Hose Company No. 6, which was located on Prospect Avenue. City historian Pat Fenoff has since disabused Gossips of that notion. She cited newspaper accounts of meetings that took place in the Jones firehouse, attended by more people than could fit in that little building. She also pointed out that the company is often referred to as "Big Six" and explained it got the name because the company's fire engine was particularly large--too large to fit into the little building in the Academy Hill playground. Fenoff suggested, because the building resembles buildings in the old section of the cemetery, that it may be contemporary with those and constructed for storing maintenance equipment.  

1 comment:

  1. The Annual Drinking Water Quality Report for 2017 is a seriously flawed document. It states that the source of Hudson's water supply is the Churchtown Reservoir. That is only partially true. The report fails to point out that the reservoir is fed by a miles-long aqueduct from New Forge Road that taps into the Taghkanic Creek. The aqueduct takes well over one million gallons a day from the creek, and in fact, drains it dry during summer months. (The aqueduct was built in about 1904, and took so much water from the creek that New York State had to pay mill owners along the creek hundreds of thousands of dollars because the reduced creek flow made their mills inoperable). The watershed feeding the aqueduct follows the creek northward into Hillsdale. So THAT's where Hudson's water comes from. I am shocked that this report is so loose with the facts. Dan Udell