Making the Walkway Over the Hudson a gateway for businesses in surrounding areas

Sep 25, 2012

Business and Community Leaders gathered today in Poughkeepsie to hear proposed plans for expanding economic Power of the Walkway Over the Hudson... Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Dave Lucas was there and files this report.

The plan, "Walkway as a Gateway to Success" aims to leverage the economic power of the Walkway to generate economic opportunity and crate jobs on both sides of the river. The branding strategy: attract visitors to the Walkway by using cutting-edge branding techniques and guerilla marketing. Officials made their case before a small but supportive crowd at City Hall.

Vox Incorporated's Director of Strategic Planning Jonathan Nettelfield says nationally-known photographer Bob Krist will take still pictures while SkyCamUSA will handle aerial video shots for the new public relations campaign. He envisions billboard advertising in New York City: Ulster and Dutchess County Tourism will be involved - the marketing targets include NY metro riders, hikers and bikers as well as history buffs - plus - local pride-oriented individuals and civic groups.

The branding strategy will employ tools ranging from low-tech postal mail to high-tech apps and QR codes for smartphones. One major component involves creating and erecting uniform signage that visitors can easily follow.

Public meetings have been held in many communities over the last several months - officials say they expect to rezone, rebuild and redevelop over time as they work to iron out policy issues and zoning amendments with local officials.

A budget is yet to be established - officials say plans are subject to modification and they expect to hold more public meetings in east and west side communities.