The Newburgh City Council will apply for a Preserve New York grant in the amount of $16,000 to help preserve two iconic Downing Park structures.
Funding would assist the city in preparing a building condition report for the Pergola and Shelter House at Downing Park. There would be a 20 percent cash match for a total cost of $20,000.
According to Alexandra Church, Director of Planning and Development, the project would be a collaboration with the Downing Park Planning Committee. The committee had already gone ahead and spoken with a preservation architect who recommended the condition report be conducted.
“The condition report shall include an architectural analysis of the resources, the Pergola’s overall current condition, illustrations and drawings, prioritize recommendations for the restoration, rehabilitation or treatment and preliminary cost estimates for its repair,” said Church.
The current Pergola sits at the top of the hill in Downing Park, overlooking the Hudson River. As time has gone on, the structure has become unsafe and is an eyesore. Proposed for the area was a memorial for the remains of African Americans that were discovered during the reconstruction of the city courthouse along 9W.
Councilman Anthony Grice shared his support for this initiative to restore these structures within the city and Councilwoman Ramona Monteverde also expressed support for the resolution but to also apply for more grants to assist with historic building resolution. “I support this. I really hope that money will transform the Shelter House at Downing Park,” said Councilwoman Giselle Martinez.
Councilwoman Patricia Sofokles, who founded the Downing Park Committee, expressed her support and was happy to see the city becoming involved in the overall care and maintenance of the park.