Legalizing the Hudson waterfront discussion
Feb 28, 2011 6:38 am
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="Hudson's riverfront plans, currently under review, are the subject of a new legal brief "shot across the bow" by local environmentalists."][/caption]Jamie Larson of the Register-Star has a story up about the new legal brief filed with the New York State Department of State by the attorney for the environmentally-minded local citizens group Valley Alliance, outlining what the group believes to be the remaining major issues of concern in the city of Hudson’s long awaited Local Waterfront Revitalization Program. The Valley Alliance is focused on issues relating to the protection of the city’s south bay wetland and discontinuing or limiting the use of lands in that wetland by the Holcim cement company (formerly St. Lawrence Cement), which owns the deep water port and the O&G trucking company. The major point of contention is the potential use of the old “causeway” railroad bed that cuts directly through the bay for the trucking of aggregate to the port. “We want to see an LWRP pass as soon as possible,” Valley Alliance cofounder Sam Pratt is quoted in the story, “but that’s predicated on having a good LWRP.” “If the current draft of the LWRP is not revised,” Alliance attorney Warren Replansky states in the brief, “the City and State could be in violation of the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA). To avoid further delays in the passage of the plan, the Valley Alliance attorney recommends that “all references to the Causeway as a preferred alternative route be eliminated.” Pratt added that after the Alliance and the group Scenic Hudson met with officials at the New York State Office of Coastal Resources in January, they felt that the dialogue has been productive and their concerns are being heard. But they wanted to file the brief to “put some meat on the bones.” City and state officials have been going back and forth for months making changes to the LWRP, trying to find acceptable common ground on it can come back to the city’s common council for a vote, expected in the next few months.