The City of Kingston, NY

    Welcome to the City of Kingston, NY

    Kingston, dating to the arrival of the Dutch in 1652, is a vibrant city with rich history and architecture, was the state's first capital, and a thriving arts community. City Hall is in the heart of the community at 420 Broadway, and is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., except July & August (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.).  Come tour our historic City, with restaurants that are among the region's finest, and local shopping that promises unique finds.

    Historic Churches

    Kingston is home to many historic churches. The oldest church still standing is the First Reformed Protestant Dutch Church of Kingston which was organized in 1659. Referred to as The Old Dutch Church, it is located in Uptown Kingston. Many of the city's historic churches populate Wurts street (6 in one block) among them Hudson Valley Wedding Chapel is a recently restored church built in 1867 and now a chapel hosting weddings. Another church in the Rondout is located at 72 Spring Street. Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church was founded in 1849. The original church building at the corner of Hunter Street and Ravine Street burned to the ground in the late 1850s. The current church on Spring Street was built in 1874.

    Kingston, NY

    Kingston became New York's first capital in 1777, and was burned by the British on October 13, 1777, after the Battles of Saratoga. In the 19th century, the city became an important transport hub after the discovery of natural cement in the region, and had both railroad and canal connections.

    Kingston, NY

    The town of Rondout, New York, now a part of the city of Kingston, became an important freight hub for the transportation of coal from Honesdale, Pennsylvania to New York City through the Delaware and Hudson Canal. This hub was later used to transport other goods, including bluestone. Kingston shaped and shipped most of the bluestone made to create the sidewalks of New York City.

     

    Contact Us

    City Hall Address:
    420 Broadway
    Kingston, New York
    12401

    Phone:
    (845) 331-0080

    Background

     Originally built in the 1970s, the 'Pike Plan' is a system of connected sidewalk canopies along portions of Wall St. and North Front St. in Uptown Kingston. In 2011-2013, the aging Pike Plan was reconstructed, with support from state and federal funding sources. Shortly thereafter, noticeable deficiencies in the canopy's design and construction were identified. In late December 2015, the previous administration filed a lawsuit against the design, engineering and construction firms involved in the project. Unfortunately, the NYS Supreme Court ruled that the design and engineering firms could not be held liable as the statute of limitations had expired. However, the City was successful in securing a $315,000 settlement in 2018.

    In 2017, Mayor Noble and the Kingston Common Council worked to eliminate the Pike Plan Tax, which was a special taxing district for those who had buildings attached to the Pike Plan. Going forward, all costs and fees related to the Pike Plan were assumed by the entire city, not just those who had a portion of the Pike Plan.

     

    Current Conditions

    Portions of the Pike Plan have significantly deteriorated. For example, as described in a communication from the City Engineer to the Finance Committee of the Common Council, "One area that was identified as needing repair was the section from 43-45 N. Front Street. This location had leaking roof, skylight and gutter issues, along with deflection of beams." Unfortunately, there are a number of sections along the Pike Plan that are visibly damaged and/or have demonstrated interior deficiencies (see Reference Materials below.)

    The Common Council and Mayor must now decide how to proceed. The options include:

    1) Repair the canopies 

    Estimated Cost: $450,000 + on-going maintenance. There could be additional costs if further investigation shows more extensive deterioration, similar to 43-45 N Front Street.

    2) Remove the canopies and repair building facades

    Estimated Cost: $868,000

     

    Public Input Survey

    In an effort to ensure that all stakeholders have a voice in this decision, the City of Kingston will be issuing two surveys. One survey will be sent directly to property owners and the other will be broadly circulated throughout the community. 

    To complete the public survey, click here. Paper surveys are also available at City Hall, located at 420 Broadway. Surveys must be completed by March 8, 2019.

     

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Q: Do property owners currently pay for the Pike Plan maintenance?

    A: Currently, all maintenance costs are included in the Department of Public Works budget and are shared by all taxpayers. The Adopted 2019 budget has allocated $16,000 for maintenance and electricity costs.

     

    Q: Why didn't the City sue the businesses responsible for the poor condition of the canopy?

    A: In December of 2015, a lawsuit was filed by the City of Kingston. Unfortunately the lawsuit was filed too late by the previous administration, and therefore the City was unable to pursue litigation against two of the three defendants. One defendant was held liable for $315,000.

     

    Q: Who makes the decision and how will that decision be made?

    A: The Common Council of the City of Kingston is responsible for allocating financial resources and awarding contracts. The decisions related to repair of the current Pike Plan or the demolition and rehab of existing properties would be made by the Council with input from Kingston residents.

     

    Q: If the canopy is removed, will the building facade be repaired?

    A: Yes, the area where the canopies were attached to the building would be repaired as part of this process.

     

    Q: If the canopy is removed, will the property owners incur the costs associated with the removal and the repair to the building facades?

    A: No, under the proposed plan, the City of Kingston would pay all costs related to the removal and repair.

     

    Q: If the canopy is removed, will the City need to repay the grant that was used to install the canopy?

    A: The City of Kingston is currently in communication with the original funding sources to determine whether any repayment of funds would be necessary given the current situation.

     

    Q: If the canopy is repaired, will the property owners incur the costs associated with the repairs?

    A: No, the City of Kingston would cover all costs associated with the repairs of the Pike Plan structure.

     

    Q: Can the City perform the needed work using existing staff and equipment or will an outside contractor be hired?

    A: The project is too large and complex for City staff to perform the needed work. An outside contractor would be hired.

     

    Q: Can the City use funding from the Downtown Revitalization Initiative to pay for either option?

    A: The City of Kingston has a building façade fund through the Downtown Revitalization Initiative that could potentially pay for individual façade repairs. The City is communicating with NYS Department of State representatives to further discuss if these funds can be used for this purpose.

     

    Reference Materials

    Water Spray Testing Report (11/1/2016)

    Water Spray Testing Report (11/3/2016)

    Canopy Framing Investigation (9/6/2017)

    Petrographic and Air Void Analysis Results (6/8/2018)