Community-Transit Oriented Development - Poughkeepsie, New York
Reshaping the Poughkeepsie Waterfront Public through Breaking the Boundary
After constructions of infrastructure such as highway and railroads, Transit Oriented Development (TOD) along the Hudson Valley became one of the major movements that seeks to collect array of regional benefit in the Northeast region, and at the same time, visual spectrum and accessibility to the waterfront along the Hudson river has been gradually declined. Poughkeepsie is also part of this controversy along the river with an ongoing proposal, Poughkeepsie Watelfront Redevelopment Plan, by the city of Poughkeepsie, State and Federal Government, and the MTA.
The redevelopment plan, claiming waterfront vacant lots after many iterations of urban renewal, is mostly funded by the State and Federal Government through constructing new parking structures and supporting the City's annual payment for maintenance. The city and MTA tries to pursue private developers to invest for new development on their vacant land, simultaneously increasing tax revenue from these new growth. Though greatly imagining to economically benefit and enliven the city through Hudson Valley regional transportation system, the plan doesn't resolve the current issue of bypassing infrastructures that clearly separates the community of the inner city from the waterfront. Poughkeepsie waterfront with the TOD plan promotes the site into a deeper segregation from the city without any valuable link in between, and the waterfront having great potential of valuable resource should equally include the Poughkeepsie community as their goal.
Instead of continuing traditional Hudson Valley TOD plan, this project, Community-Transit Oriented Development, proposes to relocate the waterfront redevelopment such as commerce, residence, and mixed-use to the Main Street. Two main strategies along the Main street is utilizing city-owned property as nodes for open public space. and persuading private property owners for new development through new zoning features. In addition to altered structural placement, new shallow waterway along the street will bring back the potential of land value for better development and generate new programs and activities with an extended waterfront atmosphere in the inner neighborhood. As a consequence, preserving the waterfront as public will provide stronger accessibility for the Poughkeepsie community and persist the ongoing waterfront promenade.
The Poughkeepsie waterfront and Main street seek to enhance and create multiple forms of accessibility into a redesigned urban fabric by integrating fragments of potentiality and implementing better design to the community. Reinforcing the Main StTeet and downtown to the city's periphery hopes to become a successful case study and be able to apply to other regional cities by not defining infrastructure as barriers, but as a potential location for meaningful redevelopment throughout the region.