Sunday, October 4, 2020

Testing Proposed Improvements

Yesterday, two demonstration projects intended to test concepts and get feedback from the community were installed in the city. The installations, primarily paint on the pavement, are designed to be temporary and are meant to test out ideas that could later be rendered in a more permanent manner as curb extensions or sidewalks. The final goal of the project, which is part of Hudson's major DRI (Downtown Revitalization Initiative) project, is "to create safe, accessible streets that can be enjoyed by pedestrians, bicyclists, visitors and people who want to shop downtown." 

One of the demonstration projects is located at Second and State streets, at Bliss Towers, and involves curb extensions and sidewalk along the north side of State Street.

The second installation, at Warren and Front streets, involves only curb extensions.

The project at Warren and Front streets will be removed as soon as city leaders, residents, and the consultant team have had a chance to assess the merits of the proposed changes. The project at Second and State streets is expected to remain in place for several months.

Comments and questions about the installations can be emailed to John Gonzalez (


  1. Does the paint convince drivers to slow down? Does it make pedestrians crossing the street any safer? I don't get it. Seems to me that a narrower street is a more dangerous one. I now hate bicycling on Warren when the so-called safe streets cones and planters are out, especially at intersections.

  2. The answer to the above questions are, "Yes."

    Wide streets encourage speeding.
    Narrow streets slows drivers.

    It is precisely this kind of counter-intuitive insight into human behavior that professional urban designers and planners can bring to the very real urban problems we as a small, under-resourced city face.

    We suffer without them.

    I encourage everyone to visit these demonstrations and experience them first-hand.

    My own experience - despite having spent a good amount of time thinking about this - was to be shocked at the difference between how much space cars need versus how much we give them.

    I, for one, am interested in ways of putting people first and am so excited for what is possible here in Hudson.

    1. good luck slowing down all the speedy vehicles in town with paint on the street. It's fantasy.

    2. "Narrow streets slows drivers."

      Obviously this concept doesn't apply to the alleys.

    3. I think the principle is that what slows drivers down is their concern for their own safety, and then the safety of others.

      In an alley (any self-respecting alley, anyway) one enjoys the luxury of being all alone and without prying eyes.

      Narrow and alone and unobserved is different than narrow and not alone and observed.