Monday, July 9, 2018

Meetings of Interest in the Week Ahead

The midweek holiday that seemed to spread to the weekends that preceded and followed it is now behind us, and we're back to the monthly round of meetings, starting with a trifecta at City Hall tonight.

Today, Monday, July 9, two public hearings precede the monthly informal Common Council meeting.
  • At 6 p.m., there is a public hearing about the proposed new franchise agreement with Mid-Hudson Cablevision. The old franchise agreement expired a few years ago, and it's only now being renewed. To review the terms of the proposed agreement, click here
  • At 6:30 p.m., there is a public hearing about the route of the Empire State Trail through the city. The route being proposed enters Hudson from the north on Harry Howard Avenue, goes down the Dugway to Mill Street and then Dock Street, south across the city on Front Street, then up Allen Street to Third Street and continues south on Route 9G.

  • At 7 p.m., the Common Council holds its informal meeting for July. The proposed amendment to the zoning code that would allow nonconforming uses in R-2 and R-2H districts to double in size and expand onto adjacent lots is expected to be introduced at this meeting. Click here to review the amendments proposed.
The R-2 and R-2H districts are located primarily along Green Street and Fairview Avenue and include the neighborhoods off Fairview Avenue to the west and between Fairview and Route 66 to the east. State Street from Fourth to Sixth streets is also designated R-2 or R-2H as are North Fifth Street and the streets that intersect it--Prospect, Washington, and much of Clinton. 
Also of interest on the agenda for tonight is a resolution to sell 67 Fairview Avenue, a vacant lot where the City demolished a house back in 2013; a resolution to adopt the Strategic Housing Action Plan created by the mayor's Housing Task Force; and the proposed law pertaining to vacant buildings.
On Tuesday, July 10, the Hudson IDA (Industrial Development Agency) is scheduled to meet at 1 p.m. in City Hall. No agenda is available for that meeting.

On Thursday, July 12, there are two meetings--one in the afternoon and one in the evening.
  • At 2 p.m., HCDPA (Hudson Community Development and Planning Agency) has its monthly meeting at 1 North Front Street. Among the topics it's possible to predict will be discussed are the agency's financial crisis, the imminent departure of its executive director, and the ongoing sale of surplus property, including the parcel now being sold by sealed bid.
  • At 6 p.m., the Planning Board holds its monthly meeting. On the agenda for this meeting is an application for a lot line adjustment at 248 and 250 Columbia Street to create two lots of equal size.

Gossips devoted much attention to these two houses back in 2013, when their owner, Per Blomquist wanted to demolish them and build in their stead a new building with five one-bedroom apartments, each with an area of 700 square feet. A misreading of the Bulk and Area Regulations in the zoning code claimed that the minimum size for an apartment was 1,500 square feet, necessitating an area variance for the building. The error was embraced and vigorously defended for months until finally Daniel Tucsinski, then assistant city attorney and counsel to the Zoning Board of Appeals, succeeded in correcting the misconception and clarifying that 1,500 square feet pertained to the lot not the apartment. Meanwhile, Blomquist had lost his funding for the project and expressed his disdain for the snafu by spray-painting the two houses gold. It will be interesting to see what his plans for these two houses are now, but the request for a lot line adjustment doesn't bode well for their survival.
On Friday, July 13, the Historic Preservation Commission holds the first of its two monthly meetings. A full agenda is not available, but certain to be reviewed is the proposed facade restoration/renovation of 364 Warren Street. Jason O'Toole, representing the Galvan Foundation, presented this rendering of the facade to the HPC at its last meeting, but consideration of the proposal was postponed until architect member Kate Johns could be present, which will happen on Friday.


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