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Hastings Seeks to Identify Buffer Zones

HASTINGS-ON-HUDSON, N.Y. – Preserving the gateways between villages and creating some type of buffer zone is something that will require a little bit of research to define what exactly that would entail before any action can be taken, according to the Hastings Board of Trustees.

“I think it requires a little bit of an investigation to see where we want them,” said trustee Meg Walker. “It’s not as simple as we want a 50-foot buffer zone.”

Walker said the village needs to figure out how they will define the zone, where they want it, how big and how wide it would be. The village will enlist the help of a volunteer to research what exactly the village would want to gain a better understanding of the benefits from a buffer zone. Hastings Village Manager Fran Frobel pointed to Irvington preserving it’s stonewalls and trees along the gateway into the village as a positive example of this.

“I think the gateway is part of the desire to preserve it as a buffer zone,” he said. “As you approach the village you’d have well landscaped land, something well worth preserving.”

Frobel said the village will start to research how exactly it plans to define these buffer zones and then figure out how it will proceed.

“They’re trying to determine what’s special about it,” he said. “Is it the meadow they’re trying to preserve, the trees, a historic site or the stone walls? They mentioned the gateway as something that’s part of the scenic buffer.”

Hastings Mayor Peter Swiderski said the idea of gateways have been conceptually laid out by the Comprehensive Plan, but this project is something that will remain on the smaller scale.

“I’m conscious of staying with something that has community support and not much beyond that,” he said. “It’s not a crazy, unlimited project.”

The Comprehensive Plan lists the gateways to the village as Main St. at the “five corners” intersection, Warburton Ave. from its intersection with Broadway, Warburton Ave. from its crossing with Washington Ave. and Southside Ave. and the Metro-North train station.

The plan said it would like the village to “improve downtown’s gateways and create a sense of arrival” when entering the village. Suggestions included extra landscaping, welcome kiosks and community banners at these gateways to invite people into the downtown.

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