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City to Improve Liberty Street Parking Lot Through ‘Green’ Renovations

The City of Poughkeepsie is planning to transform the Liberty Street Parking Lot into a visually appealing, environmentally friendly space for motorists, bikers and walkers and businesses in the area.

The $1.4 million project will vastly improve the pavement and drainage of the public parking lot and reduce the impacts of flooding during strong weather events. Outdated stormwater management methods will be replaced by “green Infrastructure,” including concentrate pavers that will enable water to soak into ground sources reducing runoff and flooding.

“This area of the city is making great progress, and this project will complement those changes and do so in a forward-thinking way,” said Mayor Rob Rolison.

In connection with this project, the City will hold a public meeting from 5 to 6 p.m. Tuesday Dec. 17 in the lobby at 40 Cannon St.

 The city also is announcing that street-level parking lots — including the Liberty lot — will be free to motorists on weekends for the rest of 2019.

 “We are encouraging people to come into the city to do some shopping during the holiday season,” the mayor said. The street-level parking lot locations are: Duro Lot, 197 Main Street; Garden Street Lot,  23 Garden Street; Conklin Street Lot, Between 14 and 16 Conklin Street; Liberty Street Lot, 41 Cannon Street; Academy Street Lot, 52 Cannon Street; and Crannell Street Lot, 68 Crannell Street.

 The Liberty lot project is expected to begin in the spring and also will help combat the impacts of water runoff that can overwhelm the city’s sewer system, causing “combined sewer overflows” or CSOs. While Poughkeepsie is in compliance with all New York State regulations, the City is working to mitigate these overflows, and this project is part of that strategy. Permeable pavers also can reduce the need for de-icing chemicals while providing a durable and aesthetically pleasing surface.

 As part of the project, dozens of trees will be planted and pedestrian scaled lighting will be added throughout the parking lot to enhance the area.

“The environmental benefits of this project will be significant,” said City Administrator Marc Nelson. “And the physical upgrades will be noticeable – to people and businesses in the area.”

The project is being funded through the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation’s Green Innovation Grant Program. The Liberty Street parking lot serves not only as a priority parking place for Cannon Street businesses but for the Dutchess County courthouse and office buildings on Market Street, as well as for those frequenting area restaurants and businesses. Sidewalks and walkways adjacent to the parking lot also will be improved during the project. The 153-space parking lot will be renovated in two phases, leaving half of the spots available for use throughout the project.