Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Disappointments Large and Small

At tonight's Common Council meeting, Gossips was expecting to hear about the proposal to adapt the former John L. Edwards School into affordable housing, but that didn't happen. Council president Tom DePietro, who announced the presentation last week at the Hudson Housing Authority meeting, explained tonight that the developer, still unnamed, was in the process of negotiating with the Hudson City School District, and the negotiations had "bogged down on the school district side." He suggested that there might be a special meeting to learn about the proposal at some point in the future.

Photo: Jonathan Simons
Another thing that didn't happen that no one knew was supposed to happen was a report from mayor's aide Michael Chameides on the status of the City's DRI (Downtown Revitalization Initiative) projects: Promenade Hill, Hudson Connects, the Furgary, and the Dunn Warehouse.

And then there was the resolution authorizing the Tourism Board to pay up to $30,000 for a project manager for Shared Streets 2021. Although the resolution appeared this afternoon among the documents for tonight's meeting, it disappeared again before the meeting. It wasn't introduced or voted on at the meeting began. Indeed, during the meeting, it wasn't mentioned at all.

But the biggest disappointment came when Alderman Malachi Walker (Fourth Ward) asked, as he has several times before, about including gym equipment in the plans for the plaza at the entrance to Promenade Hill. (Suffice it to say the disappointment wasn't that there would be no pullup bars, pushup bars, and dip bars.) Responding to Walker's question, Mayor Kamal Johnson, who was present at the meeting, said it wasn't likely there would be gym equipment, because the lowest bid for the construction was $500,000 over budget. $500,000 over budget? The DRI funding for Promenade Hill is $1.1 million. The amount by which the lowest bid for construction exceeds the budget is close to half of all the money available for the project!

What of this lovely plan that so gladdened our hearts will have to be sacrificed in order to make it something the City can afford?


  1. A few days after the trees were removed from Promenade and the dysfunction at City Hall rears its ugly head.


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  4. I'm curious to know what specific kind of gym equipment Alderman Malachi Walker wanted to include in the plans for the plaza at the entrance to Promenade Hill. Perhaps such equipment could be put in underutilized Charles Williams Park on Mill Street, and funds could be raised through GoFundMe.

    1. Reread the post, "General Worth." The information is there: pullup bars, pushup bars, and dip bars.