Wednesday, June 24, 2020

More About Trucks in Hudson

While, as Gossips reported yesterday, the pressure is growing to get the Planning Board to act in the matter of Colarusso and its gravel trucks, the question of how we deal with the rest of the trucks that pass through the city remains.

Photo: Bill Huston

In April 2019, it was announced that Assemblymember Didi Barrett had secured $100,000 from the State of New York to fund an origin and destination study of trucks that pass through Hudson. In the press release announcing the funding, Barrett is quoted as saying:
For decades, truck traffic has been a major safety and quality of life issue in the city of Hudson. The congestion slows traffic, causes safety hazards, and leads to noise, light and air pollution for visitors and residents. It's also out of character with Hudson's historic architecture and streetscape. This critical funding will help us collect the data to develop an informed solution.
Gossips doesn't know exactly when the City took possession of the $100,000, but in April 2020, city treasurer Heather Campbell noted at a Common Council Finance Committee meeting that the $100,000 was one of the restricted items in the City's fund balance.  

Late yesterday, a notice appeared on the City of Hudson website that the City had issued an RFP (request for proposal) for someone to undertake a "Truck Route Traffic Study." The RFP can be found here. The RFP defines the scope and goal of the study in this way:
Accurately measure and report truck traffic through the city, inclusive of the origin, destination and volume of truck traffic. Supplement the origin and destination with an assessment of the environmental (public health), physical (infrastructure degradation) and social (neighborhoods and residents) effects of truck traffic. Use this data to propose alternate routes that reduce harms. Alternate routes are likely to involve towns outside of Hudson and therefore alternative routes need to also consider how those towns and stakeholders along the new route will be impacted. Using the data and proposed alternatives, the City of Hudson would then work with surrounding towns, Columbia County, New York State, and stakeholders to build consensus for modification and improvement to the truck route.
Also of interest in the document is this passage from a section titled "Project Background," found on pages 3 and 4.

According to the schedule set forth in the RFP, proposals must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday, July 14, and the notice of award will be made "not earlier than" Monday, July 27.


  1. Is the RFP’s author a moron, or just in the pay of the mining company?

    They don’t wish to call the proposal what it is - a new road in a new location - so instead it’s a “realignment” and also a “renovation” (but of a proposed new road?).

    At least they got one thing right. Before the company’s announcement at the May Planning Board meeting only the South Bay section was ever meant to be paved.

    But don’t doubt for a minute that the same people now pushing this traffic study – those we’ve already caught conflating two totally different truck issues - are consciously exploiting the confusion they’re deliberately sewing among residents.

  2. The RFP's characterization of the private road proposal may have been written by a company publicist. We've seen those exact phrases before.

    It certainly provides a suitable bookend with the city’s earlier DRI application, in which “City officials and neighboring business owners support the expansion of Colarusso.”

    This RFP is a scandal no less than the DRI application was a scandal two summers ago.

  3. The RFP’s enthusiastic description of the private road proposal was lifted straight from a 2016 letter in which NYSDEC Commissioner Seggos determined that the Greenport Planning Board would become the SEQR Lead Agency.

    In turn, Seggos’ words were adopted from Greenport’s flawed description of the project, words assumed to have been provided by the applicant itself.

    Back to the present, what possible advantage is there in quoting, word for word, from a document which marks one of the City’s worst failures in recent memory? The words themselves were written by a different municipality - and likely the applicant itself - when making their winning argument against the City’s interests.

    The RFP is quoting our former adversaries about a case which is ongoing for the City, so I ask again whether this is just the latest in the City’s long history of unforced errors or is it part of a larger and more pernicious design?

  4. In fewer words: it was surely a Colarusso publicist who provided the copy used by the Greenport Planning Board in its 2016 letter to the DEC.

    In 2020, those identical words now appear in the City's new RFP.

    Someone should find out why.

  5. Good sleuthing, Unheimlich. Please look into this City of Hudson. This is pathetic.