H. van Ameringen Foundation to support Promenade Hill Park Improvements
“Thank you to H. van Ameringen Foundation for the generous support to this important and ambitious project,” says Mayor Kamal Johnson. “Promenade Hill Park will be an accessible park for all to enjoy.”
The gift is in memory of H. van Ameringen, who lived in Hudson and New York City for the past 19 years. Henry was a businessman, real estate developer, philanthropist, advocate for LGBTQ rights, and marijuana legalization. He died in September of 2020 at the age of 89.
“Henry was caring, compassionate, filled with knowledge, and easy to have a good long chat with,” says Rick Scalera, 5th Ward Supervisor and former Hudson Mayor. “Henry had a history of helping many programs and individuals in over many years in Hudson.”
“The Promenade Hill Park project is exactly the kind of project Henry would have been proud to contribute to—giving people of all walks of life especially those with disabilities and, of course, Mom's with carriages, the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful and breathtaking views of the Hudson River.”
The Promenade Hill Park renovation is largely funded by a Downtown Revitalization Initiative grant from New York State to the City of Hudson. The grant allocates $1.1 million to the park improvements. The designs were led by Starr Whitehouse Landscape Architects and Proper and O’Leary Engineering with significant community input over the past year.
The park (prior to construction) is not fully accessible and does not meet the standards of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The redesigned park would provide an accessible route between the parking lot, street, viewing area at the upper promenade, and playground. In addition, it would provide an accessible drinking fountain.
Construction bids for the project were opened on March 15, 2021. All three bids were significantly over budget and the city and design team began reviewing options of scaling down the project to fit within the budget. Some budget-cutting options included replacing materials of the granite sett plaza, bluestone paver bands, and limestone plaza border. Other considerations were the removal of stone block benches and landscape boulders and the replacement of the spray loop shower with a ground spray. The newly committed gift from the H. van Ameringen Foundation will help make up the difference of the budget shortfall and enable the city to move forward with the project with the amenities.
“I know Henry would have been very disappointed with a scaled-back project and with the help of his foundation's funding it will indeed be ‘A crowned jewel entrance!’,” says Scalera.