Roger Hannigan Gilson has an article in the Times Union today about the hotel being proposed for the corner of Fourth and Warren streets by the Galvan Foundation: "Hudson's biggest property owner, a non-profit, plans luxury hotel."
The article provides no information about the hotel that Gossips has not already shared. What makes it a must read is Gilson's account of an interview with one of the Common Council's rookie members, Alder Mohammed Rony (Second Ward).
Is there any way get around the blocked article online for those of us who don't subscribe?ReplyDelete
Clear the History on your browser and it will reset your number of free articles for the month.Delete
Alder Rony hit on all the points about Galvan; hoarding properties, artificial inflation, and benefiting from the crisis they created. At least we know local politicians are aware about Galvan's business model, but what action are they going to take? Galvan has near free reign on Hudson.ReplyDelete
Rony's comments are dead-on. After years of Tom's self-serving pander act filling the room, it's a real breath of fresh air to hear some real candor from the Common Council.ReplyDelete
I'd be happy to see that hotel project happen. Those who are expressing opposition to the project bear the obligation of suggesting what an alternative might be. That mess at 4th & Warren has sat there for decades with no progress, and I don't see investors other than Galvan stepping up with viable proposals. And it seems that lately "parking' is often brought up as a way to impede new projects, which is unfortunate. Most other small towns would be delighted to have so much economic activity that parking becomes a problem.ReplyDelete
Happy to see it happen? Do you live in Hudson? Pay taxes here? Because as the article makes clear, this is not about a hotel, economic activity or the viability of the proposal: it's about milking the tax credits, PILOTs and other bullshit financial games that hucksters, abetted by politicians, use to line their pockets at the expense of "small towns" that are "delighted" to so much "economic activity" in their borders -- until the "economic activity" becomes nothing more than a transfer of wealth. Wake up.Delete
Indeed, it's hard not to imagine Galvan is going to get tax breaks for a hotel then contract out with the county to lease the rooms for a homeless population that probably has few ties to Hudson. (Galvan's Civic Motel charges exorbitant rates year-round, likely putting it at a revenue-per-bed rate on par or higher than most of Hudson's hotels, which are at capacity only on weekends and during tourist season.)Delete
I don't know, I have mixed feelings on that. The buildings were empty for years, so no housing units will be lost by making it into a hotel. On the other hand, how many hotels do you need in such a small town? There is not much of an economy here without tourists. If the statistics on the vacant buildings are true, perhaps some deal could be made, so many units of affordable apartments in the vacant buildings in exchange for granting permissions for the hotel? The hotel will bring lodging tax and the guests will generate sales tax, so there is some benefit there. Seems you have to find a way to milk the tourist industry for what you can get out of it and use the money wisely to benefit the residents without becoming so overrun that it destroys the integrity of the town.ReplyDelete
When a city has no Planning Department (or anything even close to it) and it is a target for investors, flippers, developers and schemers from all over the planet trying only to turn a buck while claiming to "do the right thing for the community" or some equally attractive-sounding nonsense, a place like Hudson suffers big time. No planning, no plan, so we are at the mercy of those who show up with the money and get the real estate. Then things really get ugly -- hotels and enormous apartment buildings on once quiet streets with few parking options to begin with here there and anywhere, probably where they shouldn't be located. And, of course, Air BnB's galore to choose from. Suddenly there are few if any affordable rentals or homes to buy and bodegas the only place to afford some "groceries." The wealthy flock to live and visit at $400 a night. The common folk flee. I think this process is called Galvanization, or at least it should be, and it has arrived. Like a steamroller over a bitty city with no plan.ReplyDelete
I am possibly mistaken - I think Hudson City Hall has at least two planners doing our work. That would be Kamal Johnson and Tom Depietro. Give them both a salary raise!
People who are just coming into the situation may miss the sarcasm and think that last paragraph should be taken at face value.Delete
Are they going to contract out the management to an experienced hospitality company or run it themselves? I hope this is not some sort of bait and switch to put a SRO flophouse to get more social service contracts. Just ask yourself, what does Galvan have more experience with?ReplyDelete
Just check out the sidewalks at Fourth & Warren at every snow and ice event and you'll get a really good idea of Galvan's "community involvrment".ReplyDelete
Then head up Warren to 5th and walk their sidewalk along the vacant lot, from Warren to the alley. Try not to ruin your ankle or fall on your face, even without snow and ice. It is one of the worst half blocks of sidewalk in all of Hudson, if not the worst. And Galvan's stated mission is to "improve the quality of life in Columbia County." It's absurd. Instead, they offer City Hall hundreds of thousands of dollars to repair a decrepit building they are desperate to get rid of and magically turn into a respectable ADA COMPLIANT City Hall. ADA compliant!Delete