HUDSON, N.Y. — A grassroots petition calling for positive development,

recreation and conservation of the Hudson Waterfront, while removing heavy

truck traffic from the City’s streets, has collected over 500 signatures from local

residents, business owners and concerned stakeholders in its first week. The

petition, created by the new group Our Hudson Waterfront, states that the

signatories “love the Hudson Waterfront and believe it can be developed as an

active, vibrant center of new opportunity for the whole community.”

Directed toward Hudson area decision makers, the petition coincides with recent packed

meetings of the Hudson Planning Board, which is currently reviewing all dock and

trucking operations by A Colarusso & Son on the city’s waterfront.

“Given the great opportunity our Waterfront represents, we strongly oppose noisy, dusty,

polluting and hazardous uses there,” the petition continues. “We firmly believe such

incompatible uses jeopardize the immense opportunity before us by inhibiting public

access to the river, curtailing commercial activity, reducing popular enjoyment, and

discouraging economic development that will benefit the entire city and future


Chris McManus, a Hudson resident who grew up in Columbia County, says the group “wants to bring people from across the city together to create what is rightfully ours— what a diverse and dynamic city like Hudson deserves —a brilliant Waterfront.”

The two most recent Planning Board meetings have attracted crowds of 100 residents or more, with the vast majority of attendees speaking out against the Colarusso plans to expand operations at the waterfront and build a two-lane truck highway across the city’s protected wetlands. The Planning Board review began after the company performed unpermitted work on the dock, which triggered a requirement for a broad conditional use permit for gravel loading operations.

The company is projecting as many as 284 truck transits every weekday, past local businesses and across three major arteries to the City: Route 9, Route 9G, and the Broad Street Amtrak rail crossing. Faced with the review, Colarusso appealed an Order to Remedy to the City Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) but was denied. The company then sued the City of Hudson and the Planning Board to stop the review. The lawsuit was denied “it its entirety” by Acting State Supreme Court Justice Michael Melkonian in January 2019.

“We launched the petition because the waterfront is so crucial to the future of our city, and we would love to see it live up to its potential,” says First Ward resident David Konigsberg who lives downtown with his partner, Peg Patterson, a local business owner. “That means greatly expanding public access and attracting the kind of development that will increase activity and create jobs—especially for our young people.”

He adds that “we also reject the claim, put forth by Colarusso, that we must sacrifice our waterfront to move the company’s dangerous truck traffic from our residential streets. A great small city must not be forced to choose between an excellent waterfront and public safety. It is absolutely critical to make sure the city has both.”

In its petition, the grassroots group writes that “The Hudson Waterfront is one of our city’s greatest public and economic assets,” that needs to be “developed as a center of enjoyment for all.” Goals listed include:

• Enhanced recreational opportunities, including boating and fishing, hiking, dining, shopping, public sports and events—all of which will increase economic activity and employment;

• Housing and commercial spaces consistent with the city’s historic riverfront character and designed to leverage the area’s abundant natural resources;

• Marinas, suppliers, boat launches and other infrastructure that will maximize access to the Hudson River and increase enjoyment for the whole community;

• Conservation of wildlife, wetlands and other irreplaceable ecological features of the Hudson River, including our protected South Bay Creek & Marsh

“I walk my dog at the Waterfront every morning, and I can hear what goes on there from my home,” said downtown resident Susan Simon. “Colarusso’s application claims they have no neighbors. I am their neighbor.” The petition includes a logo designed for the group by noted designers and Hudson residents Leslie and Woody Pirtle and may be signed or viewed at