New businesses illustrate Newburgh renewal. By A. Alfano.
Growing up in the outskirts of the City of Newburgh has allowed me to observe the urban renewal that has occurred in my hometown. In particular, I have been able to witness the renewal of downtown Historic Liberty Street, at one time a nearly commercially vacant street, now bustling with numerous small businesses.
The city of Newburgh, located on the western side of the Hudson River 60 miles north of New York City, is home to about 30,000 people. Settled in the early 18th century and a brief home to George Washington during the Revolutionary War, Newburgh grew into a bustling city during the 1950s. The city’s prosperous decades can be attributed to various industries, the remnants of which can be found throughout the city. As businesses began to move outside of the city’s limits and into shopping plazas in the town of Newburgh in the 1960s, the city’s economic decline led to increasing rates of poverty and crime. (more…)
From the Hodgson Farm website
There’s no better place than the Hudson Valley to Find and Eat Your Colors.
From sun-ripened peaches and autumn berries to heirloom beans and tomatoes, the Hudson Valley’s fruit and veggie harvest peaks this month. Find your nearest farm stand, farmers market, or community garden and put these local delights on your must-do list before the growing season draws to a close. Call before you go to find out what’s available for picking that day. (more…)
This piece was originally published in the Albany Times-Union, and is being republished here with permission of the author.
Abandoned strip malls reflect unsustainable sprawl.
Travel not only to downtown Buffalo, but to many of its older suburbs and you’ll find decaying sidewalks, half-empty shopping centers, vacant lots and abandoned homes. But travel a few more miles into what was until recently open countryside, and you’ll find big new suburban homes on former farm fields. Meanwhile, the population of Erie County as a whole continues to decline.
This odd combination of declining population and accelerating sprawl is actually quite common across upstate New York — the vast area north and west of the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge. It’s the Upstate Paradox. And for the past two years, as I’ve crisscrossed the state seeking ideas for making our communities more economically and environmentally sustainable, no land use challenge, among the many in New York, seems more problematic. (more…)
An April 18 editorial commended the Capital District Transporation Authority for some noteworthy gains in making our communities more accommodating for bicyclists. Yet, the editorial asked “Why not us?” as it pointed to other cities with populations of less than 100,000 that rated higher when it came to cycling.
Just the day before, I had been thinking about what some large high-tech companies like IBM and CISCO are doing for older, small cities. I thought, “Why not us?” (more…)
I recently came across a fascinating 1998 journal of an 18-day Hudson River paddle by Times-Union writer, Fred LeBrun. From the river’s source near Lake Tear of Clouds in the Adirondacks to its convergence with Atlantic waters in New York Harbor, Lebrun documents in vivid detail the changing landscape, the challenges of river-borne travel, and personal insights along a 306-mile journey from wilderness to world-class metropolis.
One of the things that struck me about this series, entitled “The Hudson River Chronicles,” is the historical context that informed the journey. “On the cusp of a new millennium, when the river will enter its fifth century of recorded history, the Hudson has been largely cleansed of the most visible toxic stains of 20th-century abuse and neglect,” reads a passage from the introduction by Times-Union staff writer Paul Grondahl. “This resilient river now stands at another historical fork in its progress, awaiting a redefining in the 21st century beyond its previous roles as exploited working river and forgotten relic of a throwaway culture. The question in 1998 is this: What is the relevance of the Hudson River for the future?” (more…)