First the big news. "Storyboards" showing the design of the new Ferry Street Bridge, the construction of which is to begin next year, can now be viewed at the Hudson Area Library, 51 North Fifth Street. Gossips has not gone to the library to see them yet, but it has been confirmed that they are there and on display.
This morning, Rob Perry, superintendent of Public Works, was at the Historic Preservation Commission meeting seeking the HPC's recommendations for retaining walls, fencing, and lamp posts. Perry indicated that "98 to 99 percent" of the design components for the bridge were dictated by Amtrak/CSX, but in those three things--materials for retaining walls and fencing and design of lamp posts--the City had some discretion.
The new bridge, which will be higher than the existing bridge, requires higher retaining walls. The new walls will be constructed on top of the existing walls and will be made of rusticated concrete instead of natural stone. The HPC urged that in color and texture of the rusticated concrete blocks be as compatible as possible with the existing stone blocks.
Regarding the fencing, required by the railroad to prevent people from tumbling onto the tracks, the HPC expressed a preference fencing with a vertical wire pattern instead the usual chain link.
The HPC was presented with some choices for the street lamps on the bridge, to be positioned at each of the four corners and in some spots midway along the bridge.
The HPC was not definitive in its recommendations about the street lamps for the bridge, wanting to know the placement and height of the lamps relative to the scale of the bridge. The commissioners did, however, recommend that the street lamps on the bridge be consistent with the existing street lamps along Warren Street. HPC architect member, Chip Bohl observed that the overall design for the bridge was "appropriately industrial," and the lighting should be simple and integrated into that design.
Perry pointed out this morning that, in addition to being higher, to provide more clearance for trains, the new bridge will be significantly wider. In addition to two lanes for cars, there will be bicycle lanes and sidewalks on each side of the roadway.
A public meeting is being planned sometime in December to present the final plans.
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