Monday, October 24, 2016

DEC Conducting Helicopter Survey of Recreational Trail Corridor

NYC Railroad from Lake Clear LodgeThe New York State Department of Environmental (DEC) has announced that a low-altitude helicopter flight will take place over the recreational corridor between Lake Placid and Tupper Lake on Tuesday, October 25, in preparation for design and construction of a multi-use recreational trail.

The helicopter will videotape the corridor and its historic features. Additional flights are expected be made to survey the corridor with LIDAR and to obtain aerial photogrammetry data. These flights will fly at higher altitudes.

The state’s plan to govern the use of the 119-mile travel corridor from Remsen to Lake Placid was released in 2016. According to a press release issued by DEC, the State is implementing the plan with $15 million to upgrade the rail line between Big Moose and Tupper Lake and $8 million to build a multi-use recreational trail between Tupper Lake and Lake Placid.

The plan calls for DEC to manage the design, construction, and operation of the 34-mile trail. Since late summer, a stakeholder group has been working on the development of a conceptual design and operation plan for the trail.

The stakeholder group is comprised of elected officials or their delegated representatives from the three villages and four towns along the corridor, DEC, the Olympic Regional Development Authority, Office of General Services, Adirondack Park Agency officials, and local representatives from the biking, hiking, cross-country skiing, and snowmobiling communities.

A draft conceptual design and operation plan is expected to be issued for public for review and comment in the next few months. The final conceptual trail design is expected to be used to develop a request for proposals to design and construct the trail. DEC says they plan to begin removing the rails and building the trail in 2017.

Photo courtesy John Warren.

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6 Responses

  1. Lakechamplain says:

    Ah, good to hear something is happening with the rail trail; that’s one small flight for the DEC, that’s one giant leap towards a recreational trail that will benefit the region in myriad ways.
    I’ve said it before and I’ll gladly repeat it(since quite a few posters on here do it endlessly: the trail by itself is not a game changer but it has the potential to be an important cog in the main economic engine for this area, the tourist industry. There is plenty of time for intelligent people among the 3 villages most affected to come up with realistic ideas and coordinate with each other to make it a true Tri-Lakes recreational trail.

    • Paul says:

      Tourism is not the main economic engine for this area. If you look at the actual data you will see that is is about 20% of the economy in this area.

      • DoubleD says:

        The 20% figure is for the entire Adirondack region. It’s more substantial in some parts of the park. According to ROOST, tourism supports half of Hamilton County’s employment and 43% in Essex county. I’d bet it’s even more in Lake Placid. When they look at the whole park, they include places like Newcomb and Minerva where there are few if any services for tourists and its tough to find places spend any money.

      • Boreas says:

        These types of figures can be misleading. If one thinks of a pie chart, if an area has 10 sources of revenue, 20% will be a relatively larger piece of the pie than 20% in an area with 2 sources if revenue. So % of total revenue may not always be the best way to compare areas with vastly different revenue bases. In other words, revenue from tourism doesn’t necessarily have to be over 50% to be the most significant source of revenue in an area.

        • Paul says:

          True but if you look for data for areas like the tri-lakes it is clear that the main source of jobs is from the public sector. Several Adirondack towns are a few prison closures away from serious trouble that tourism could not fix. Also, I don’t think that the regional tourism board is trying to mislead us on numbers related to tourism.

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