I am supporting the renovation of the hatchery building in Riverside Park for use as an event venue. It would be a great addition at the north end of the park next to the International Gardens. It is a historic building that would add a lot to the beauty of the park and provide indoor event space, as well as outdoor space, which does not currently exist.
We’ve heard that the building should be a cafe or restaurant and not compete with other event venues. But it would still be competing… just with the other downtown cafes and restaurants. That shouldn’t be the reason for not developing it. Sadly, we’ve also heard that no other developer has shown interest in the building.
The south end of Riverside is beautiful with logistics, community theater, and the waterfront. The north end needs a garden update. With the impending development of the Northpoint District, the hatchery would be a historic addition to the entire region, as would the Charming. Right now it’s a sore eye. People will still be able to walk around the gardens and enjoy the park even more than they do now.
Our planners are professionals. We have to be confident that they will take into account neighbors, schedules, noise, parking and other logistical aspects. We can make our voices heard, but we also need to support new ideas in the city.