Saturday, April 27, 2019

Nine Not to Ignore: No. 3

On Thursday, in imitation of the Preservation League's Seven to Save, Gossips began its own list of at-risk buildings of significance in Hudson, calling it Nine Not to Ignore. Today is the third on the list--a list which is arranged in no particular order.

Hudson Upper Depot

This abandoned train station, known as Hudson Upper Depot, was on the Hudson & Berkshire Railroad, the first railroad in Hudson. Established in 1838, it originally ran from the Hudson River to West Stockbridge, Massachusetts. The depot was completed in 1871, making it three years older than the depot that is now the Hudson Amtrak station. 

Photo courtesy City Historian Pat Fenoff

In the post card image below, of the Public Square, a.k.a. Seventh Street Park, Hudson Upper Depot can be seen in the background.

For years, the building was owned by Van Kleeck's Tire, which used it for storage. Then, in November 2013, Mark Schuman of Mountain View Masonry and Landscape Supply, whose company had demolished the Old Brick Tavern at the intersection of Routes 66 and 9H in 2011 and had "disassembled" 900 Columbia Street earlier in 2013, appeared before the Historic Preservation Commission seeking a certificate of appropriateness to demolish Hudson Upper Station and salvage the materials to resell them. He told the HPC that the owner was not interested in maintaining the building and wanted to demolish it to get " little more staging area"--in other words, more space to park trucks. 

Needless to say, the HPC did not grant a certificate of appropriateness. A few months later, in January 2014, Galvan Initiatives Foundation acquired the building. 

In April 2014, Galvan replaced the roof on the building, without a certificate of appropriateness from the HPC.

There was a hole in the roof, and Galvan had been given an "emergency repair" permit to patch the roof. But instead of patching the roof, the entire roof was being replaced, an action that required a certificate of appropriateness. Code enforcement officer Craig Haigh issued a stop work order, which was lifted when Galvan agreed that the asphalt shingle roof being installed was only temporary and would be replaced when a use for the building was determined and plans for its restoration were presented to the HPC.    

Five years later, no use for the building has been determined, and it continues to stand vacant. Five years ago, Haigh offered this assessment of its condition: "That building is really in bad, bad shape." One wonders how long it will be before this building meets the same fate as the Hudson Orphan Asylum across the street.


  1. Losing that structure would be a tragedy. Our city government needs to get in Galvan's face and force them to take action.

  2. Hopefully, as soon as we catch our breaths from the fight over assessments--in which Galvan plays such a significant role--we'll be able to focus on its corrupting influence on our City's attempt to preserve its heritage. But we have to throw out a bunch of our "city government" leaders to get that done.

  3. Galvan's feet should really be held to the fire. He moves the goalposts on building after building without getting the proper permits and Hudson is gradually, drip by drip, loosing it's heritage. Unfortunately the rule of law is being eroded here as well as in the whole country.

  4. It's too bad we have reached a space and time where we no longer ride people out of town on a rail. It would be a fitting punishment for what has happened to this railroad building and all of the others that Galvan is demolishing by neglect.

  5. Save it for the cute black and white kitty that lives there!

  6. We are long past the point of asking Phil Foreman to recognize that running an efficient meeting is not the sum of his responsibilities as HPC chair.

    And if he can't decipher what it is he should be doing, then its time we get a new chairperson.