Two years ago, at this time of year, Gossips did a series called Nine Not to Ignore, in admiring but blatant imitation of the New York State Preservation League's Seven to Save, to bring attention to some of the most at-risk buildings in Hudson. The series was inspired by the loss of two historic buildings in Hudson--211 Warren Street and 620 State Street. Two years later, it's time to revisit those nine buildings to see if anything has changed. Each of the heads below is a hyperlink to the 2019 Nine Not to Ignore post about the building. The first picture is the picture used in 2019.
Not much has changed for this house, considered to be the oldest surviving house in Hudson--certainly nothing has changed for the good. A few weeks ago, a hole in the north wall of the house, first discovered in June 2015, became so large that a window fell out of the wall.
Soon after it was discovered, the hole in the brick wall of the house was filled in with cement blocks, but the house remains vacant and neglected, as it has been for close to twenty years.
After standing vacant for five years, this significant historic house, believed to be associated with the architect Alexander Jackson Davis, is now being restored. The project has come before the Historic Preservation Commission and was the subject of the public hearing by the HPC in March. The house is now getting a new slate roof.
Six months after the Nine Not to Ignore post about this abandoned train station, built in 1871, the Galvan Foundation, which owns the building, presented its plans to restore the building for use as a craft brewery to the Historic Preservation Commission. Since then, the building has become the centerpiece of Galvan's proposed "Depot District." The restoration of the building, which has been meticulous and impressive, is now nearing completion.
In April 2019, Gossips reported the word on the street was the building was being sold. It was sold, eventually, but the closing didn't take place until the end of November 2020. Earlier that month, the new owners of the building, Preservation Lane, based in New Jersey, came before the Historic Preservation Commission for a certificate of appropriateness for their plans for the building, which involve re-creating the retail storefront; adding a fourth floor to the building, set back so it will not be visible from the street; and creating seven apartments in the building.
The new owners posted about their acquisition and their plans for it on Instagram and provoked a firestorm of criticism. Michael Hofmann, now a candidate for city treasurer, wrote a letter to the Common Council with the subject line: "This is gentrification. What are we doing about it?"
Some interior restoration may have begun on the building, but so far there has been no change to the exterior.
Last Saturday, Gossips reported these buildings have been sold to the Galvan Foundation. On Thursday, Galvan announced its plans to develop the buildings as a hotel, to be called The Hudson Public.
In October 2020, a proposal to complete the exterior restoration of the building came before Historic Preservation Commission. The proposal involved replacing the temporary replacement windows now in place with permanent replacement windows, removing the fire escape on the South Fifth Street side of the building, adding shutters to the Union Street side of the building, and re-creating a storefront at the southwest corner of the building. Replacing the windows was presented as a necessary preliminary step to beginning the interior renovation, which the HPC was told involved creating one bedroom and studio apartments.
The HPC granted a certificate of appropriateness to everything in the proposal except for the storefront. It was the opinion of the HPC that the square windows proposed for that space were inappropriate. So far, Gossips has seen no evidence that work has begun on this building.
The current status of this building is unknown. Two years ago, it was being advertised for sale on LoopNet.com for slightly more than $7.6 million. Today, if you follow the link Gossips provided two years ago, you find the message: "This Industrial Property is no longer advertised on LoopNet.com."
This building, one of the last surviving 19th-century industrial buildings on our waterfront, is owned by the City of Hudson. It will be remembered that the City received a $500,000 Restore NY grant for the building in January 2017, and $1 million in DRI (Downtown Revitalization Initiative) funds have been earmarked for the Dunn building. A contingency for the DRI funding is that the City have a development partner.
Since the Nine Not to Ignore post, a temporary repair was done to a portion of the roof of the building. This work was done a year ago, in April 2020.
In March 2020, the DRI Committee issued an REI (request for expression of interest) for developing the Dunn building. The only response came from Bonacio Construction in Saratoga Springs. On May 13, 2020, several members of the DRI Committee had a conference call with two representatives of Bonacio. During that call Bonacio expressed interest in the three City-owned parcels north of the Dunn warehouse. In a follow-up call, Bonacio "explained that the additional parcels would be needed to round out the Dunn redevelopment site and make a potential investment viable." In June 2020, the Common Council passed a resolution authorizing the mayor to issue "an expanded request for expression of interest" for the Dunn warehouse and the three parcels north of the site--everything east of Water Street, from Broad Street to Ferry Street. There was even talk of adding the Kaz site, owned by Hudson Development Corporation, into the package.
The current status of things for the Dunn warehouse is difficult to discern since DRI Committee meetings are no longer open to the public, and, according to Council president Tom DePietro, who is a member of the committee, the committee is no longer holding regular meetings. The last information relevant to the Dunn warehouse came from DePietro at a meeting earlier this week of the Common Council ad hoc committee originally tasked with selling City-owned property. He said the City was awaiting a decision on whether or not the three parcels north of the Dunn warehouse were considered waterfront property. If they were waterfront property, the City would be prohibited from selling the parcels. If they weren't, they could be sold. It is not known if a new REI was ever issued for the Dunn warehouse.
|Photo: Jonathan Simons|
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