In June, the 10th Mountain Division of the U.S. Army, based at Fort Drum in Jefferson County, released a draft Programmatic Environmental Assessment (PEA) that outlined ambitious “air and land-based training activities” to possibly take place across nine counties in Upstate New York, including four (St. Lawrence, Lewis, Oneida, Herkimer) that are partially within the Adirondack Park, and two (Hamilton, Essex) that are entirely within the Adirondack Park Blue Line. [Read more…] about Army Proposal For Air, Ground Training On Forest Preserve Problematic
The 36,000-acre Whitney Park is up for sale. This tract, which includes 22 lakes and ponds, and over 100 miles of undeveloped shoreline, has been at the top of New York State’s land protection priority list for 50 years.
Over the decades, the property has been lightly developed by the Whitney family, which maintains a large complex of buildings in a mountain estate called Deerlands on Little Forked Lake, and two inholdings totaling around 400 acres on Forked Lake and Plumley Pond at the south end of the tract. [Read more…] about Petition Circulating Calling To Make Whitney Park Forest Preserve
The family of recently deceased Saratoga civic and philanthropic leader Marylou Whitney announced today that the 36,000-acre Whitney Park lands in the center of the Adirondack Park are for sale.
John Hendrickson, the husband of Marylou Whitney, stated in the Wall Street Journal that his asking price is $180 million. Whitney Park is located in the Town of Long Lake, in Hamilton County and is one of the largest privately held contiguous tracts of land in the 6.1 million-acre Adirondack Park. [Read more…] about 36,000 Acres of Adirondack Park for Sale
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has announced the acquisition of 241 acres in the Catskills, including 208 acres adjoining existing Forest Preserve lands in the Bluestone Wild Forest that is expected to preserve open space and expand recreational opportunities.
The purchases of the two properties were made possible through a partnership with the Open Space Institute (OSI) and $758,000 from New York’s Environmental Protection Fund (EPF). [Read more…] about 241 Acres, New Trail Added to Catskill Forest Preserve
This is the last article in a 5-part series on possible amendments in 2020 to Article 14, Section 1, of the NYS Constitution, the famed forever wild provision.
This article looks back at the amendment for NYCO Minerals, Inc., in 2013, that authorized exploratory drilling on 200 acres in Lewis Lot 8 in the Forest Preserve in the Jay Mountain Wilderness. This amendment was barely approved, passing by the narrowest margin of any successful Article 14 amendment. The NYCO Amendment was different from all other amendments to Article 14 because it marked the first time that a private corporation used the amendment process to seek and obtain Forest Preserve lands for no other purpose than benefiting its bottom line. Every other amendment had a public benefit and purpose. The NYCO Amendment did not. [Read more…] about DEC’s Efforts To Lobby For A Mine In Adirondack Wilderness
Protect the Adirondacks has reviewed the options for the future of the Camp Gabriels complex, a former state prison in the Town of Brighton in Franklin County in the northern Adirondack Park. The site is located between Saranac Lake and Paul Smith’s just outside of Gabriels, in Franklin County.
The land that the prison complex was built upon is Forest Preserve, protected under NYS Constitution Article 14, Section 1 (the “Forever Wild” provision). The prison complex was part of a state purchase in 1982 of over 224 acres. This facility has been dormant since 2009 when the state closed the prison camp. [Read more…] about Camp Gabriels: A Former Prison On ‘Forever Wild’ Land
Article 14, Section 1, of the New York Constitution, the famed “forever wild” provision, has been amended 16 times since 1938.
It has been amended five times since 2007, making this period the most active and intensive in Forest Preserve history for amendments.
Several Article 14, Section 1 proposed amendments are being currently being drafted and organized by the Department of Environmental Conservation and administration of Gov. Andrew Cuomo. [Read more…] about Forever Wild: New Constitutional Amendments Being Considered
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has formally nominated seven individuals to the board of the Adirondack Park Agency, which oversees land-use, planning and zoning on both public and private lands, in cooperation with other state agencies.
Three individuals who are currently serving were nominated for new terms and four individuals were nominated for their first terms. [Read more…] about Cuomo Makes Adirondack Park Board Nominations
The ongoing pandemic is asserting its influence on Adirondack summer recreation, amplifying worries about public safety and the increased number of visitors, especially in the High Peaks.
There are many questions: will there be more hikers this season? Fewer? Will choked trailheads be COVID vectors? Will novice visitors seeking to escape both the coronavirus and social isolation mean an increase in unprepared hikers and rescues? Will a decrease in the usual resources such as open facilities, trail stewards and shuttles cause our visitor management challenges to be overwhelming?
No one knows. Understandably, concern is high. [Read more…] about Viewpoint: We Need Forest Rangers As Forest Preserve Ambassadors
A DEC plan for the 119-mile Travel Corridor that runs through the heart of the Adirondack Park does not adequately assess actual and projected impacts on the Park’s public wilderness and natural resources according to the group Adirondack Wild: Friends of the Forest Preserve.
At issue is whether the plan complies with the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan. Adirondack Wild does not believe it does comply. The group filed comments on the Remsen-Lake Placid Travel Corridor Unit Management Plan amendment with the Adirondack Park Agency this week. [Read more…] about Adirondack Wild: Rail-Trail Plan Fails to Assess Impacts