Promised lots improve Bliss rebuild plans

HUDSON—New property possibilities dominated the Hudson Housing Authority (HHA) Board of Commissioners meeting on September 19. And a meeting with the Hudson Community Development and Planning Agency (HCDPA) the next day brought new property acquisition closer to reality.

The HHA runs the 135-unit income-restricted housing complex consisting of the high-rise Bliss Tower and the low-rise Columbia Apartments on its grounds. The HHA Board has been discussing redeveloping its property for some time. This redevelopment is likely to include demolishing its existing buildings and rehousing its current tenants in new buildings, which is likely to require additional land.

On September 19 HHA Executive Director Jeffrey Dodson reported that the housing authority was negotiating with the City of Hudson to acquire city-owned land. On September 20 the HCDPA gave HHA the option to buy three specific land parcels if it needs them.

The news about the three parcels became public September 21 from Claire Cousin, vice-chair of the HHA Board.

On September 24, Sarah Black, an administrative assistant for the HCDPA, explained that if the HHA determines it needs any of the land, it would be able to buy it at one-half its appraised value. This agreement allows HHA to include the parcels, along with its existing property, in a request for qualifications it will issue in an effort to seek partners in designing the redevelopment. The HHA would buy the parcels which the final design would include.

According to Ms. Black, the three parcels are:

•The corner of Columbia and 2nd streets, across 2nd Street from Bliss. Addresses 202, 204 and 206 Columbia Street

•State Street from Front Street to the Bliss ball courts, across State Street from Schuyler Court and Bliss. Despite its proximity to Bliss, this parcel has a potential problem; part of it used to be a gas station, and toxic residue might remain, Ms. Black cautioned. Addresses: 6, 8, 10, and 12 State Street; and One Lombard Street

•The strip of Front Street from Warren Street to Prison Alley, across from the Chamber of Commerce building. This parcel is the farthest from HHA current property. Addresses: 2 and 4 Warren Street; and 6, 8, 10, and 12 Front Street.

The three parcels are different from the three parcels in a housing proposal just presented to the City of Hudson by a private a developer.

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