The City of Poughkeepsie is beginning the process of
updating its Comprehensive Plan, something that hasn’t been undertaken in more
than two decades.
The Comprehensive Plan will provide a vision for
future growth and development in the city, and the public’s input will be
sought as the blueprint is developed. Amendments to the City’s Zoning Code will
be included in the project. The city hopes to simplify and reduce the number of
Zoning Districts and modernize the regulations to address current and new
“There is so much activity going on in the City of
Poughkeepsie,” Mayor Rob Rolison said. “The city is growing – and is poised to
grow more – but we have to ensure that these changes occur in a responsible
way. Updating the Comprehensive Plan is long overdue and will provide the city
with clear guidance as we move forward.”
The City is seeking
proposals from qualified and experienced planning consultants
to prepare an update to the plan. Submissions are due March 27. Once a
consultant is selected, an 18-month timeline will be created to bring the
project to fruition. The project is partially funded through the New York State
Department of Environmental Conservation Climate Smart Communities grant
program. Consequently, particular attention will be paid to the integration of
sustainability elements within the Comprehensive Plan and development of
metrics to track the success of its implementation.
During the past 20 years, the City of Poughkeepsie
has engaged in a number of strategic planning efforts to target key areas
across the city for revitalization. These areas include the waterfront
transit-oriented development area surrounding the Poughkeepsie Train Station,
the Walkway-Gateway District near the Walkway Over the Hudson, and most
recently, the City’s downtown central business district and the Waterfront
City officials believe the time is ripe for
Poughkeepsie to create one policy document to be a guide for the next 20 years.
City Planning Director Natalie Quinn, who will serve
as the city’s Project Manager, said, “We are excited to take on this seminal
planning exercise now that City Hall has reconstituted its internal planning
team to lead the update. Working within DEC’s Climate Smart Communities
framework is a great opportunity to ensure that the land use policies put into
place guide Poughkeepsie towards a future that is environmentally, socially and
The City’s Comprehensive Plan was last updated in
1998, and it’s been over 40 years since the City’s Zoning Ordinance was
comprehensively reviewed and updated.
City of Poughkeepsie officials are pleased to
announce that more than $3 million in state funding has been awarded for
various economic and community development projects in the City.
The largest award, $2 million, is going to the Bow
Tie Cinemas project. Bow Tie is planning to build a $11 million, nine-screen
movie theater in a section of the Crannell Street parking lot. The city also is
receiving $100,000 to update its comprehensive plan and zoning laws, as well as
$100,000 for a sewer inflow and infiltration study.
“These funds will make a huge difference as we work
with developers on a signature downtown redevelopment project,” said Mayor Rob
Rolison of the Bow Tie award. “In addition, other monies will move us further
along to making much-needed infrastructure repairs and to get to work on improving
the comprehensive plan.”
Bow Tie’s 40,000-square-foot theater would be
adjacent to an innovative mixed-use development proposed by the Kearney Realty
and Development Group. The Kearny project was recently awarded Upstate Project
of the Year by New York State Association for Affordable Housing.
These projects promise to transform that part of the
City, and City officials say the plans mesh nicely with what the City had in
mind when, earlier this year, it approved an Innovation District for the core
commercial section of the City’s downtown area.
Bow Tie Theater is expected to create between 40-45
permanent positions and draw 300,000 visitors into the City each year.
“We are excited the project is moving forward and
appreciative of the City’s forward thinking approach to reinvigorating
downtown,” said Ben Moss, CEO of Bow Tie Cinemas.
The state funding, announced Thursday, is coming
from the Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) initiative, created by
Gov. Andrew Cuomo in 2011. The Councils are
public-private partnerships made up of local experts and stakeholders from
business, academia, local government, and non-governmental organizations. The
REDC deemed the Bow priority project in this round of funding.
Poughkeepsie organizations and other area
initiatives also are receiving funding. They include Family Services receiving
$490,000 to make renovations at the Family Partnership Center, and the Walkway
Over the Hudson being awarded $588,562 to continue a comprehensive lighting
of Poughkeepsie economic and community development officials were the featured
presenters at the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce’s monthly
breakfast on Nov. 20. Paul Hesse, community development coordinator for the
city, and Paul Calogerakis, economic development director for the city,
provided updates on more than a dozen projects and fielded questions from the
audience. The event was held at The Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel & Conference
City has seen a considerable uptick in economic activity in the last few years,
including new residential units and businesses. More than 1,200 housing units
have been either recently completed or are under construction, one third of
them below market rate. And one million square feet of commercial space has
been recently completed, is under construction or in the approval process.
find out more about economic development opportunities in the City of
Poughkeepsie, contact Economic Development Director Paul Calogerakis at [email protected],
845-451-4215 or Community Development Coordinator Paul Hesse [email protected]
City of Poughkeepsie officials have approved the use
of a Natural Resources Inventory that will provide planners, developers, and
residents with easy access to a wealth of information about the city’s
The inventory consists of 27 maps and offers details
about the natural and historic resources in Poughkeepsie. The inventory also
includes information about the city’s geology and soils, water resources, and