Albany is located on the western edge of the Hudson River in the Lower Hudson Watershed, a tidal estuary which makes up approximately 40% of the Hudson/Mohawk River Basin, one of the largest drainage areas on the eastern seaboard of the United States.
The Hudson River (and its tributaries) are the City’s major natural features that have shaped its identity and sense of place throughout its history. Albany is privileged to have approximately 4.5 miles of waterfront, most of which is designated for recreational and entertainment activities... Erastus Corning Riverfront Preserve in North Albany, the Corning Preserve in Downtown, Island Creek Park in the South End… as well as establishments such as, Riverfront Bar & Grill, Dutch Apple Cruises, Historic USS Slater, etc... And not to overlook the major economic driver in the South End, the Port of Albany. The Port offers significant employment and financial benefit to the Capital Region and New York State overall, generating over $800 million in investment.
Though the entire eastern border of Albany is distinguished by the Hudson River, access to the waterfront still remains a challenge for the City. Albany’s access points have been extensively altered by development and are limited by transportation barriers (Interstate 787 and nested railroad lines).
The City's focus to reconnect with the waterfront and implement strategies as outlined in Albany 2030 is a major priority. Initiatives are already set in motion to address key issues, such as access improvements, land use, (re)development, and climate change assessment along the City's waterfront, as well as the preservation and protection of area watersheds of the Hudson River... examples include the City's Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan, the Corning Preserve Master Plan, and the Patroon Creek Daylighting project.