Ir­ish Cul­tural Cen­ter good for Ron­d­out area

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - OPINION -

Dear Ed­i­tor: As a res­i­dent and busi­ness owner in Kingston, I would like to express my over­whelm­ing sup­port and bring up several points re­gard­ing the Ir­ish Cul­tural Cen­ter’s pro­posed build­ing.

• The peo­ple who form the Ir­ish Cul­tural Cen­ter are many of the same peo­ple who or­ga­nize the “Hoo­ley on the Hud­son” and the St. Pa­trick’s Day pa­rade. Both of these cel­e­bra­tory events bring the largest crowds to the Ron­d­out area that I have wit­nessed. The rev­enue and at­ten­tion these crowds bring to the local busi­nesses is sub­stan­tial. With both events, shut­tle buses are em­ployed to deal with sub­stan­tial out-of-the-area park­ing.

• While the prin­ci­pal fo­cus of the cen­ter is Ir­ish cul­ture, it also would ed­u­cate about the his­tory of Ron­d­out and the im­mi­grants who worked on and for the canal com­pa­nies that make up a large part of Ron­d­out’s his­tory. Its pres­ence would add an­other di­men­sion to the area.

• The old sy­n­a­gogue, which also has been a restau­rant, would in­di­cate the use of build­ings on Abeel Street are of a mixed na­ture. The ar­gu­ment of res­i­den­tial use only would seem to be in con­flict with this.

• Be­cause of its ex­po­sure to and ac­cess through Com­pany Hill Path on the West Strand side, a good por­tion of the cen­ter’s traf­fic can be routed through this area and would help high­light the park and canal walks in that area.

I can think of no bet­ter steward of the con­cerns of the Ron­d­out area than the Ir­ish cen­ter.

Michael Cleary, Kingston

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