Hudson Woods: A Portrait of Sustainable Living

Scattered across the Hudson River Valley there are many gems that, despite seeming hidden compared to nearby New York City, shine brightly as aspirational symbols of sustainable living and beautiful home design.

hudson woods house interior

The region has become a popular destination for ecotourism and real estate development.

One of the latest developments is Hudson Woods, a small community of eco-friendly homes nestled in the hamlet of Kerhonkson. Created by Lang Architecture, Hudson Woods delivers on its website’s promise of being a place “where design meets nature.” The houses lie in a secluded forest, and they subtly compliment both the surrounding trails and looming Catskill Mountains.

All 26 homes in the 131-acre area include sustainable amenities such as high-efficiency hot water boilers and radiators, as well as smart thermostats. Homeowners may further improve the eco-friendliness of their properties by purchasing certain “upgrades:”

Hudson Woods also provides services to its residents, everything from maintenance and transportation to personal training and pet care. Perhaps the most pleasantly surprising part of the package is beekeeping. Homeowners who are interested in reviving the dwindling bee population, which is crucial to the health of our environment, can ask Hudson Woods staff to connect them with local beekeepers and experts.

With all of his projects, architect Drew Lang’s goal is “to create authentic, meaningful experiences at every turn.” At Hudson Woods people can experience living sustainably in nature, and at every turn they can explore the richness of the Hudson River Valley.

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Comments (3)

  • Love the idea of eco-community but am a bit disappointed that the only standard sustainable amenities mentioned are the boiler, radiator and thermostat, and the “upgrades” are SO BASIC! Perhaps I’ve missed an entire paragraph, but what materials are being used in the home construction? What water collection system and distribution is in place for the community? Is there a grey water program (for example, to enhance the health and life of the upgrade vegetable garden)? Community recycling, composting, and refuse? Is it me or did I miss the part about what makes this community “eco-friendly?” I’ll explore further on their website and I’m hopeful I discover building materials from reclaimed wood and metal, use of sustainable flooring such as bamboo, R factors with at least a minimum rating required. In other words, and I don’t mean to be a butthead offensive literary critic, but I’m HOPEFUL the author left out vital details of a community promoting itself as eco-friendly. Very respectfully and humbly offered from someone who has become an environmental activist only recently and has so much to learn – and – was hopeful this article would add to my knowledge base and possibly provide community based ideas that could be replicated in my neighborhood which is the second oldest neighborhood in the State.

    Our homes simply cannot be “unbuilt” nor would we ever want that because the artistry, craftsmanship, and beauty of 175 year old masonry and hand carved wood needs to be preserved and guarded. We are merely the current custodians for these marvelous homes. However, we are tight and active and play well together as a neighborhood. We have an aggressive recycling, refuse and composting program; a community garden where residents can rent a plot each season and it’s been doubled in size and there is STILL a waiting list. We discuss crop rotation and use grey water for irrigation. We also have an active beautification team who plant thirty 48” diameter Victorian design urns that line our “Main Street” with TWO seasonal rotations every year and, we try to use collected water or grey water to keep them vibrant. However, we have extremely strict standards because of the historic zoning that actually challenge us on ways to reduce consumption or try to introduce ways to go off grid. It takes discussion and thought to maintain the balance of historic preservation with the conversion to sustainable materials – but at least there IS a discussion. FAR from perfect and participation is no where near 100%, but we are proud of what we are contributing. I was truly hoping to read an article about a community where sustainability and eco preservation and utilitarianism was universal and the NUMBER ONE priority.

  • This article describes a “light green” architectural approach which unfortunately does not reach far enough to make these homes truly sustainable. Disappointing.

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