Decrepit house makes way for park

GREENPORT — One of the area’s longest-standing eyesores may soon fall to the wrecker’s ball.

The ramshackle house at the fork in the road where Route 23B and Columbia Turnpike diverge will be replaced by a green space surrounding an ornamental archway welcoming motorists to Hudson and Greenport.

Town resident Dan Kenneally outlined the project at the May 4 Greenport Town Board meeting. He said the town, the county and the City of Hudson are working together to bring it about, and credited Mary Mazzacano with the original idea.

He said the house, which the county took for back taxes several years ago, is as hideous inside as it is outside. He displayed photos of rooms filled with trash and garbage.

Mr. Kenneally said early estimates were that the cost would be $10,000 for each of the three partners, but it now looks like the tab will be closer to $5,000 each. A. Colarusso & Son has offered to donate gravel.

Supervisor Edward Nabozny hailed the project for both aesthetic and traffic safety benefits. “That’s a dangerous intersection,” he said. “This will give better sight distances.” He added that he wants to see “some traffic improvements” at the site, including turning lanes for vehicles eastbound on Columbia Turnpike and westbound on 23B.

When Robert Pinkowski asked who will maintain the park, Mr. Kenneally said “low maintenance” shrubbery is planned.

Curt Warfield asked whether underground fuel tanks will have to be removed. Mr. Kenneally said there is no plan to dig into the ground at the site.

The board took no action on the proposal, which is still in the preliminary planning stage.

Also at the meeting, the Town Board voted unanimously to seek bids for repair work at the south end of Mount Merino Road, just off Route 9G. Morris Associates engineer Paul McCreary told the board that erosion around a culvert threatens the roadway with eventual collapse.

Mr. McCreary recommended stabilizing the slope with soil fill and rip-rap, a type of large, crushed stone, at an estimated cost of $120,000. Bids are due May 31, with a projected starting date for the work of July 15.

Town picks tags over bags

GREENPORT–The town wants out of the garbage bag business, Town Clerk Sharon Zempko told councilmen at their monthly meeting May 4.

Once the current supply of $1 bags is depleted, she said, residents will buy stickers for $1 and place them on their own, store-bought, 13-gallon bags. The stickers are non-removable.

Ms. Zempko said those who try to sneak the stickers onto larger bags will find the bags left for them to deal with. “The limit is 13 gallons and 15 pounds,” she said. “We’ll know if people go over that.”

She attributed the change to rising prices and declining quality of the bags the town was buying, as well as the hassle of storing them.

Once the $2, 30-gallon bags are gone, the town may go to stickers for that size as well. – Chris Simonds

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