Wednesday, October 10, 2018

News of the Bridge

Mark your calendars! Mayor Rick Rector announced yesterday a public information session about the Ferry Street Bridge to take place on Monday, October 29, at 6:30 p.m. in the Community Room of the Hudson Area Library, 51 North Fifth Street.

At the meeting, the mayor, DPW superintendent Rob Perry, and representatives of the engineering firm Creighton Manning will present an update on the various regulatory requirements pertaining to the bridge and a preliminary design. After the presentation, there will be opportunity for public comment.

The Ferry Street Bridge, which crosses the railroad tracks and gives access to the waterfront, has been closed to vehicular traffic since October 2014. The funds for reconstructing the bridge are coming through the NYS Department of Transportation's Region 8 office, and the project is proceeding according to DOT's prescribed timeline. The actual construction of the bridge is expected to happen in 2020.

Earlier this year, the State Historic Preservation Office determined that the bridge, which was constructed in 1905, was not eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places because components of the bridge were salvaged from the Albany Freight Bridge, which was built in 1866 and dismantled around 1902. Also diminishing the bridge's historic significance were modifications made to the bridge in 1915, 1934, 1955, and 1995. So it appears that the current bridge will be demolished, and a new bridge built.

Back in 2016, at a meeting about the bridge convened by Mayor Tiffany Martin just a month before it was announced that funding for the bridge would be coming from DOT, Perry reported that the course of action recommended by Creighton Manning, in a study commissioned by the City in 2015, involved replacing the existing bridge with a precast concrete bridge. The picture below shows such a bridge.

At the time, Perry said of the proposed bridge, "It's not a pretty bridge. It's a bridge to get vehicles across the railroad tracks." 

Perhaps, given that the State of New York is investing $10 million in DRI funds in the BRIDGE District (even though BRIDGE is an acronym), there will be some interest in making the actual bridge, a focal point in the DRI district, something that is not merely functional but also has some aesthetic appeal. 

Mark your calendars and be at the meeting on October 29.

Update: Two documents relating to the planning for the Ferry Street Bridge can now be viewed at the City of Hudson website. They are the Draft Project Scoping Report/Final Design Report and the Concept Plans.

1 comment:

  1. Recently and for decades Hudson has been rich in artists, yet when aesthetics ever been considered in the City's engineering decisions? Unless the bottom line prevails, an attractive outcome may require a deliberate effort to counter the default mindset of the entire engineering profession.

    The principal modification to the Ferry Street Bridge which prevents its eligibility for historic listing was the removal of two outer trusses supporting bridge-level walkways at both sides. When the bridge was built in 1905 it was nearly 70 feet wide.