Posts Tagged ‘Adirondack Rail Trail Debate’

Friday, December 14, 2018

Rail Trail Corridor Definition Change Headed To Governor

APA Building in Ray Brook NYThe New York State Adirondack Park Agency has recommended approval for an amendment to the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan (APSLMP) to change the Travel Corridors classification category definition, the guidelines for management and use, and amendments of related provisions. The Agency’s recommendation will move to Governor Andrew Cuomo for his approval.

The Agency issued the following news release Friday afternoon. You can read more about the rail trail controversy here at the Adirondack Almanack: » Continue Reading.


Thursday, October 18, 2018

RR Board President Responds To Rail-Trail Issues

It is certainly unfortunate that the debate concerning the Adirondack Railroad has continued for as long as it has. One would surely think that adults, objective in their analyses and wishing for the greatest good as an outcome, could have solved this long ago but, no. There is even a renewed attack from the trail advocates.

We had hoped that after the resounding success in the courts and the unambiguous decision of State Supreme Court Justice Robert G. Main, that we could begin talks to successfully implement the 1996 Unit Management Plan and not continue the bickering. So let’s take another look. Several economic studies have been undertaken over the past years using data from Essex County and NYS publications. Assessed by outside, independent consultancies, the conclusions are clear. » Continue Reading.


Monday, October 1, 2018

Tony Goodwin: A Railroad To Lake Placid Is Not Sustainable

To date, much of the rail vs. trail debate has touted the potential benefits of the possible uses of the Adirondack Rail Corridor. The supposed benefits of a trail include increased local recreational opportunities both summer and winter plus economic benefits from those who will travel to the area to use the trail with bicyclists and snowmobilers to be the greatest users.

Rail supporters question whether those benefits are greater than the benefits of a fully restored railroad that would supposedly bring greater economic benefits by transporting more visitors to the area.

Mostly left out of the debate is any discussion of just who and in what numbers would actually ride a restored railroad running 140 miles from Utica to Lake Placid. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Adirondack RR President: Implement 1996 Management Plan

adk scenic railroadWhat follows is a statement to the press from the Adirondack Scenic Railroad.

“A Freedom of Information filing by the attorney for a supporter of the Adirondack Scenic Railroad provided the public comments received by the APA in response to their DSEIS amendment to the Remsen-Lake Placid travel corridor,” said Bill Branson, President of the Adirondack Scenic Railroad. “By a significant majority, the response favored Alternative 1, take no action,” he added. » Continue Reading.


Saturday, July 7, 2018

Dick Beamish: Adirondack Rail Trail For All

As the Adirondack Park Agency once again ponders the fate of the Tri-Lakes rail corridor, the return of a temporary, for-profit rail-bike business is being considered for the stretch of track between Saranac Lake and Lake Clear.

The popularity of these machines gives a hint of the potential benefits that will accrue from a bike path on this state-owned right-of-way once the tracks are removed. This much-discussed Adirondack Rail Trail now awaits a final okay from the APA and perhaps (here we go again!) a final round of hearings on the state’s Unit Management Plan governing use of the rail corridor. » Continue Reading.


Saturday, April 7, 2018

Commentary: Make Adirondack Railroads A Priority

20th Century Transportation PrioritiesFour unprecedented March Nor’easters caused millions of dollars in damage, kept utilities scrambling to restore power, and disrupted transportation up and down the east coast in 2018.

Choosing policies that will make matters worse should be the last thing to do in New York State, but that is what is happening in the Adirondacks and the Catskills. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Adirondack Scenic RR Names New Director

adk scenic railroadJack A. Roberson is the new Executive Director of the Adirondack Rail Preservation Society (ARPS).  He takes the position effective immediately.

In an announcement sent to the press.  President of the Board and Chief Executive Officer Bill Branson said: “Mr. Roberson joins the ARPS continuing a life-long career in the railroad industry. He brings expertise and experience in all aspects of operations, tourism marketing, and finance. His leadership will contribute greatly to implementing the long-term ARPS strategy to expand and improve rail passenger services into the Adirondack region.” » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 8, 2018

Public Comments Sought On Rail Corridor Amendment

APA Building in Ray Brook NYThe New York State Adirondack Park Agency (APA) has proposed an amendment to the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan (APSLMP) changing the Travel Corridors classification category definition, the guidelines for management and use, and amendments of related provisions. The APA will accept public comment until May 7, 2018. Three public hearing sessions will be held on April 11, 24 and 25, 2018.

What follows is an announcement sent to the press by the APA, Phil Brown has much more of the story here. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, March 7, 2018

APA Meeting: SLMP Amendments, ORDA Plans, More

APA Building in Ray Brook NYThe Adirondack Park Agency (APA) will hold its monthly meeting at its headquarters in Ray Brook, NY on Thursday, March 8th, 2018.

The meeting will address proposed amendments to the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan (including changes to the  Travel Corridor definition), Invasive Species management, and proposed actions involving Gore and Whiteface Mountains. The Public Awareness Committee will hear a presentation on the Adirondack Diversity Initiative, and the Regulatory Programs Committee will be briefed on revisions to the Variance and Large-Scale Subdivision Applications.

What follows is the agenda issued by the APA: » Continue Reading.


Thursday, October 5, 2017

Next Steps For The Adirondack Rail Trail

Adirondack Scenic RailroadOn September 26, Judge Robert G. Main Jr. overruled the entire 2016 Unit Management Plan (UMP) that would have allowed the construction of a multi-use recreation trail on a 34-mile segment of the Remsen-Lake Placid railroad right-of-way. In doing so, the judge stopped construction of both the recreation trail and the upgraded railroad from Remsen to Tupper Lake, since both state projects are linked and their funding is dependent on the UMP.

The judge based most of his ruling on what a “travel corridor” is in the State Land Master Plan (SLMP).  To define a travel corridor, he used the current travel corridors inventoried in the SLMP (“1,220 miles of travel corridors, of which 1,100 are highway, 120 miles make up the Remsen to Lake Placid railroad”) and concluded that since current travel corridors are highways and railroads no other use is anticipated or permitted.  But the SLMP defines a travel corridor as including “the Remsen to Lake Placid railroad right-of-way” (emphasis mine).  Note that the Adirondack Park Agency (APA) did not say “Remsen to Lake Placid railroad” in its definition, as it did in listing existing travel corridors, it added “right of way”, for a reason.

» Continue Reading.


Thursday, September 28, 2017

Judge Stops Adirondack Rail-Trail Plan

Adirondack Scenic RailroadA state Supreme Court judge has ruled in favor of the Adirondack Railway Preservation Society in its suit against the state to stop the removal of 34 miles of railroad tracks between Tupper Lake and Lake Placid for the construction of a multi-use recreational trail.

Judge Robert Main issued a decision on Tuesday, saying that the state’s 2016 Unit Management Plan for the Remsen-Lake Placid Travel Corridor violated the State Land Master Plan (SLMP), Adirondack Park Agency Act, and state historic laws. » Continue Reading.


Monday, September 11, 2017

APA Agenda: Essex Water System, Generic Travel Corridor UMP

APA Building in Ray Brook NYThe Adirondack Park Agency (APA) will hold its monthly meeting at its headquarters in Ray Brook, on Thursday, September 14th, 2017.

The meeting discuss the Town of Essex’s proposed variance for a municipal water system, a presentation on the Generic Travel Corridor Unit Management Plan (which covers 28 state highway travel corridors within the Adirondack Park), and a field trip to the logging and silvaculture operations at Lyme Timber Company’s Colton-Piercefield tract in St. Lawrence County.

What follows is the agenda issued by the APA: » Continue Reading.


Thursday, August 10, 2017

Field Work Begins In Controversial Adirondack Rail Corridor

Draft Adirondack Rail Trail PlanWork to develop the final design and construction plan for the Adirondack Rail Trail began in the rail corridor between Tupper and Lake Placid this week.

DEC announced that “that personnel involved in developing the final design and construction plan for the Adirondack Rail Trail will be working in the corridor,” starting Monday, “for periods of times at various locations over the two months doing various work.”  More specific schedules are expected to provided to adjacent landowners via notification letters in the coming weeks.

Personnel from DEC, Creighton Manning, and other consultants are expected to be in the rail corridor between Tupper Lake and Lake Placid “assessing, investigating, and surveying infrastructure, natural areas, and other places in the corridor to prepare for permitting, designing, and constructing the multi-use trail. The work will be undertaken over the next many weeks and includes, but is not limited to engineering surveys, wetland delineations, geotechnical explorations, and property boundary survey.”  The historic railroad transportation corridor remains the subject of ongoing litigation. » Continue Reading.


Monday, April 24, 2017

DEC Releases Draft Adirondack Rail Trail Plan

Draft Adirondack Rail Trail PlanA Draft Adirondack Rail Trail Conceptual Plan outlining the general design and features of the future 34-mile, multi-use recreational trail on the railway bed between Lake Placid and Tupper Lake has been released for public review and comment.

“The Draft Adirondack Rail Trail Conceptual Plan is an important step in developing a unique, world class outdoor recreation trail like no other in the Adirondacks, New York State, or the nation,” said DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said in a statement issued late Monday. “The rail trail will connect the villages of Tupper Lake, Saranac Lake, and Lake Placid, providing visitors and residents with new opportunities to walk, hike, and bike in three seasons, and cross-country ski, snowshoe, and snowmobile in winter, boosting local economies in surrounding communities all year long.” » Continue Reading.


Thursday, March 30, 2017

State: Adirondack Rail Trail Possible Despite Deed Questions

Opponents of the state’s plan to remove 34 miles of tracks between Lake Placid and Tupper Lake have questioned whether the state owns the rail corridor.

As it turns out, the state doesn’t own two parcels in the corridor: a half-mile stretch in Saranac Lake and a smaller parcel at the end of the line in Lake Placid. The state says it owns the rest of the corridor.

The Saranac Lake parcel is adjacent to North Country Community College and owned by Franklin and Essex counties. The Lake Placid parcel is owned by the Lake Placid-North Elba Historical Society, which operates a museum in the depot there. » Continue Reading.