Vacant Property Revitalization
Project

North Broadway Neighborhood
These homes on Chambers Street show the two faces of contemporary
Newburgh: both historic, one newly renovated, the other exemplifying
urban blight. (From Wikipedia)

Since this photo was taken, the building on the left has been renovated.

The City of Newburgh has faced many challenges as a former industrial city. One of its most significant is the existence of many vacant buildings and properties located throughout the City. Their existence has led to property value diminution in a number of neighborhoods and likely caused other related problems such as crime. Yet, the City is engaged in a comprehensive effort to stem the economic decline it has experienced and is entering into an exciting phase of rebirth.

As a component of this regrowth, the City is working diligently towards remedying these vacant buildings and properties by implementing the City of


Newburgh Vacant Property Revitalization Program. Working in partnership with the Newburgh Community Land Bank (NCLB) and the City’s residents, this program seeks to identify vacant and dilapidated parcels throughout the City and then target specific areas of parcels for reuse or redevelopment through various strategies. The first phase of the program consists of this website, which conveys information on vacant parcels within the City limits and relevant data about those parcels, and the Newburgh Vacant Property Reuse Plan.

The Newburgh Vacant Property Reuse Plan culminates a year-long community planning process in which the City NCLB evaluated opportunities for remediating distressed properties in the City. As the first step toward developing a revitalization plan, the project partners enlisted a consulting firm to prepare the Newburgh Land Use and Market Analysis. This initiative resulted in the completion of six working papers that defined the City’s demographic and economic composition, synthesized prior planning initiatives, inventoried existing land uses at the parcel level, defined redevelopment objectives, calculated the demand for housing and office uses, and established a city-wide strategy for reusing vacant land. The conclusions of each working paper were carefully reviewed by the City and NCLB’s board and presented at monthly NCLB resident advisory meetings. The Newburgh Land Use and Market Analysis serves as the baseline for all of the revitalization proposals presented in the Newburgh Vacant Property Reuse Plan. As such, all of the interventions presented in the plan emerge from a thorough analysis of citywide and regional market demand trends, the physical conditions of both buildings and streets, and the legal status of individual properties, including tax delinquencies, building violations and foreclosure actions.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS


This reuse plan was prepared for the New York State Department of State with funds provided under Title 3 of the Environmental Protection Fund, through a grant provided by Orange County.


The Target Area

North Broadway Neighborhood
Artists Rendering of 185 1st Street, Renovated

The first phase of the Newburgh Vacant Property Revitalization Program focuses on four types of interventions targeting a five block area within the City of Newburgh’s downtown between Broadway, First Street, Dubois Street, and Chambers Street. This area was chosen mainly because of the high number of distressed parcels concentrated within this area. Moreover, the distressed and vacant properties in this area are contiguous in many cases, thereby opening up the possibility for a large scale redevelopment initiative affecting whole-block footprints. In some cases, blighted buildings also adjoin vacant land, furthering the possibility for land assembly and new construction.

Besides the especially high concentration of vacant properties in the City’s downtown core, another rationale for focusing the Newburgh Vacant Property Reuse Plan in this area is to ensure that the revitalization strategy aligns with smart growth principles, including transit-oriented neighborhood development. In cooperation with Orange County, the City of Newburgh has been exploring the possibility of adopting complete streets improvements and a high-capacity transit service along Broadway, t he City’s historic main street that offers a key east west connection from the Hudson River waterfront to Stewart Airport. Focusing on this downtown neighborhood ensures that any subsequent neighborhood stabilization strategies would be consistent with a long-term development objective of facilitating transit-oriented development.

Also, the area is within walking distance of the city’s most critical economic assets: St. Luke’s Hospital and SUNY, as well as the waterfront. These proximities open the door for integrating parcel-level reuse strategies with citywide economic development strategies and improving the overall connectivity between the city’s key activity nodes.