KINGSTON – Mayor Steve Noble reassured city residents that despite the pandemic, the city is continuing to address its infrastructure and quality-of-life issues without delay.
The mayor asked everyone to rethink how the city will move forward.
“There is no doubt in my mind that Kingston will flourish once more, but without addressing the deepening inequality in our community, our future will continue to be shaped by those who wish to profit from our city, who measure success by the height of the stock market, or the price of our homes,” he said. “Kingston’s leadership must work together to alter this path and mend the division within for the good of our city.”
Tuesday evening, during Noble’s State of the City address, he said major infrastructure projects, such as the Broadway Streetscapes project, will continue to move forward.
“It may have felt like the world grinded to a halt in 2020, but we were able to keep a variety of our major infrastructure projects moving forward,” said Noble. “There will be many more projects advancing this year, including the Schwenk Drive and Clinton Avenue traffic improvements, sidewalk projects on Henry Street, Franklin Street, Flatbush and Foxhall, and the Broadway and Grand realignment,” he said.
There is a current winter delay on construction, which will cease in the spring and Noble admits there will be a temporary inconvenience for travelers because of the projects; but, it will ultimately result in a beautified and accessible Kingston city corridor.
Additionally, Noble said the city is continuing to focus on climate impact and equality for residents. There have been a number of greenspace developments: the ADA compliant Kingston Point Beach, pavilions at Hasbrouck and Forsyth Parks, the opening of the Brickyard Trail and the spring opening of the Quarry Waters section of the Empire State Rail Trail, among other parks improvements.
These greenspace projects reflect the continued manifestation of the city’s comprehensive plan to become more climate-friendly and go in tandem with the 2020 Open Space Plan, more access to public waterways, 1,000 new trees planted, along with the newly proposed Climate Action Plan 2030.
In the same vein climate stewardship, Noble said community stewardship is also still on the forefront during the pandemic.
Following a third-party housing availability study, Noble has recently proposed to create affordable housing out of two city-owned, midtown properties in an effort to mitigate the housing issue during COVID when those affected are suffering more. He said addressing issues, like housing inequality, are crucial to making sure there is progress on the other end of an unfortunate year.
The mayor maintains the future of the city is encouraging and that city officials will continue their efforts towards the issues the city was most concerned with for 2021.