Monday, March 20, 2017

APA, DEC Seek Comments Period on Trail Bridge Construction

A 12-foot wide snowmobile trail bridge constructed in the Moose River Plains in 2012.The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) and the Department of Environmental Conservation are holding a joint public comment period to solicit comments regarding proposed Minimum Requirements Approach Guidance.

The guidance pertains to the construction of trail bridges on State Land classified as Wild Forest Areas in the Adirondack Park.

The APA and DEC will accept comments on the Minimum Requirements Approach Guidance until April 14, 2017.

On March 11, 2016, the Adirondack Park Agency approved changes to the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan (APSLMP) Wild Forest Guidelines that allow the construction of trail bridges using non-natural materials (e.g. steel) following a Minimum Requirements Approach (MRA).

The MRA is a structured process to evaluate multiple criteria (e.g. tree cutting, terrain alteration, cost, restoration, construction duration) as part of planning for trail bridges within areas classified as Wild Forest.

For more information or to download the proposed Minimum Requirements Approach guidance for the construction of trail bridges in areas classified as Wild Forest in the Adirondack Park, go to the Agency’s website.

Direct comments specific to the management action proposed in the guidance to the Department of Environmental Conservation:

Peter Frank
Forest Preserve Bureau Chief
NYS Department of Environmental Conservation
625 Broadway, 5th Floor
Albany, NY 12233-4254

Address all written comments pertaining to Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan conformance to:

Kathy Regan
Deputy Director for Planning
NYS Adirondack Park Agency
P.O. Box 99
Ray Brook, NY 12977

Fax: (518) 891-3938

Submit all written comments to the APA by April 14, 2017.

For more information, call the APA at (518) 891-4050 or visit their website.

Photo: A 12-foot wide snowmobile trail bridge constructed in the Moose River Plains in 2012.

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5 Responses

  1. Todd Eastman says:

    Does this just make it easier to construct snowmobile trails within the Wild Forest sections of the Park?

    The easing of the tree cutting regs is concerning as each change to the regs weakens the Park as a whole…

    • Boreas says:


      The way I read it this would include any type of trail bridge construction including hiking trails. I think it has more to do with the materials used as opposed to where or whether bridges can be built. But I guess if one has anything to say on the subject, now would be the time to do it.

  2. Bruce says:

    I read the draft plan, which does not specifically apply to snowmobile trail bridges, but apparently any bridge required on any type of trail in Wild Forest areas. I’m all for higher safety, lower maintenance, and greater cognizance of associated ecological issues, none of which can be considered in a vacuum, but must be taken together. The tendency has been for ecological issues to be the primary concern with respondents.

    I’ve believed for a long time that updates to the SLMP are needed, and while this is not a definition of a provision or a term (some of which need further work as brought out by the tree cutting issue), it does show the APA and DEC are interested in making the SLMP more up to date and easier to understand.

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