Tuesday, April 3, 2018

The Force of Gravity

In the past year or so, a few buildings in Hudson have been demolished or are about to be because they have been deemed structurally unsound--for a proposed new purpose or any purpose--and are considered to be a threat to public safety. On occasion, a structural engineer has been hired by the City to help code enforcement officer Craig Haigh make that determination. 

It doesn't appear that an engineer's scrutiny is required to recognize that an accessory building on Partition Street, part of a property owned by the Galvan Foundation, is a potential hazard to public safety. It is buckling and crumbling and threatening to collapse into the roadway.

The documented deterioration in the past month alone is staggering.

Yet no action has yet been taken to demolish the building before gravity pulls it down, possibly injuring someone or causing damage to other property in the process.  


  1. The Galvan-owned Partition Street garage is a classic example of "demolition by neglect" (City Code §169-2), though I take it we're meant to be more charitable in cases where an owner is overwhelmed by the burden of so many properties.

    In this instance, though, the structure will most likely slide forward onto Partition Street. For those brave enough to look into the street-level broken window (broken for many years I should add!), the east foundation is bulging exactly like the west wall was a month ago (see photograph).

    At this rate, the entire building may come down at any time, day or night, and on top of anyone who's innocently passing by.

    But let's not be too judgmental considering the many responsibilities Galvan has taken on. They say it's lonely at the top.

  2. Regarding the deteriorating building on lower Partition Street. Your incomplete report might lead one to believe that this is the only structure on lower Partition Street in tear-down condition. It is not. There are two structures in far more advanced stages of deterioration than the example you site. If you are seriously concerned about the structures on the north side of lower Partition Street, including the other buildings and their owners in your posting would present the situation more completely. Citing just one structure and its owner would seem to be a bit biased. Should the building you cite collapse, it will not cause "damage to other property in the process" as there are no adjacent structures.

    It would be instructive to discover why code enforcement has not condemned these structures long ago.

    1. No other structure on lower Partition Street comes close. The other collapsing Galvan-owned garage is a one-story, and it's falling inwards. No other structure poses the same risk that this one does, not even close!

      Because the two-story garage will likely collapse in a southwesterly direction and onto Partition Street, any cars parked there may be crushed. You forgot that the cars, which are parked legally up and down Partition Street, are also "property."

      A good last sentence though.

    2. ahh, code enforcement. Craig does a good job mostly, but... something is up with them -- either Craig and staff are overwhelmed with issues, have poor time management, they are understaffed, or they just won't/can't do what they are supposed to in many instances (such as Partition). There are plenty of other code violations around town that anyone can point out. For some reason they remain, and in places Hudson remains ugly. Without a City manager, I think it'd very difficult if not impossible to find out what's up with that department and fix it if it needs to be fixed.

  3. It appears that the center post in the photo has shifted since the foundation wall collapsed. As the only support for the center beam, and so for much of the building, the idea that it's been moving is totally crazy!

  4. I'd like to ask the apologists for Galvan's pathological acquisitiveness why the Foundation thinks nothing of putting public safety at risk?

    The two garage wrecks on lower Partition Street are both owned by Galvan (a third stressed garage is currently being improved by its owner - for the past two weeks in fact).

    The two structures stand testament to Galvan's 1) impudence and indifference to anyone else's interests, 2) the Foundation's inability to manage its ever-increasing inventory of properties, or 3) all of the above.

    Inasmuch as the rest of us must tolerate the character flaws of the Galvan Foundation, even to the point of risking our lives (no exaggeration), it's as if we were fellow investors except that we're not.

    Personally, I get nothing from sharing the burden of Galvan's impudence and mismanagement because I'll have no intercourse with its Gombeen Men (look it up).

    I'll make an exception today, however, by inviting a Galvan apologist to explain why my interests and safety must be sacrificed for your interests?

    Bring it on.

  5. No reply from the Gombeens ... (big surprise).

    But CEO Haigh has just inspected the building and the wheels are turning. In fairness, it doesn't look so bad from the outside, which is why owners of derelict properties have a special the responsibility to the rest of us.

    But like I said, this is a case of demolition by neglect. Owning up to responsibility's got nothing to do with it.

  6. Good Morning unheimlich.

    I did look up Gombeen and it's word origin and history. What a cool addition to the community conversation on TGOR!


  7. Sláinte!

    I'd also urge anyone to stop by and inspect the garage for themselves. The missing window (missing for years!) is at street level, and peeking inside requires no trespassing.

    The only question you'll need to ask is, What in the world is holding this building up? (Rapidly followed by, What in hell am I doing standing here?!!)

    Too bad to lose another old structure in a historical district, but I'm sure we'll take Demolition by Neglect more seriously once the more inconvenient buildings are out of the way (§169-2).