Assemblymember Didi Barrett (D - Columbia, Dutchess) announced this week a new initiative to train and inspire a new generation of skilled trades people to work on our region’s sizable stock of old and historic buildings. Along with partners at New York State Department of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation; Dutchess County; Dutchess County Community College; Dutchess BOCES, and the not-for-profit preservation group HistoriCorps, local students are getting hands on experience restoring buildings in the historic Quiet Cove Park site in Poughkeepsie. The county park on land owned by New York State will become a vibrant recreation area with kayak rentals and piers on the water.
Given the tremendous number of historic homes and other sites in the Hudson Valley, this initiative has the capacity to transformation not only Quiet Cove, but also the regional economy as well as the lives of young people who can build a solid career in construction trades with particular expertise in preservation and restoration.
“This initiative is about developing a skilled workforce, attracting and keeping young people and restoring, preserving and maintaining our region’s rich historic legacy,” said Assemblymember Barrett. “With the vast array of historic structures in our region, both public and private, Dutchess County and the Hudson Valley are uniquely positioned to lead the state and nation in historic trades. Training these students now arms them with the technical skills, business knowledge and historic understanding to establish and sustain long careers in this field. I’m so grateful to our visionary partners who brought us to this launch at Quiet Cove.”
“We are honored to be involved in the transformation of Quiet Cove Park into a spectacular public space, leveraging the history and architecture of the site,” said Bob Ogle, Director of the HistoriCorps Institute and Eastern Region Manager of HistoriCorps. “It is also refreshing that all the partners in the project value the education and training effort associated with the project, which will yield a better quality of life for all citizens in the Hudson Valley now and into the future.”
Nearly sixty total students from Dutchess BOCES, Dutchess Community College, and Alfred State will be working on the Quiet Cove site through April, before the park opens for the season. Students will work to rehabilitate the brick, roof and windows of the ice house among other improvements, as well as restore a shed which will be used as a public kayak rental space in the summer.