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Working with communities to build trails close to home


Three trail projects
to receive assistance from PTNY

 

HTHP Trail visit

Three additional trail projects have been selected to receive assistance from PTNY as part of its Healthy Trails, Healthy People program:

 

Genesee Valley Greenway, Allegany County - work with the Cuba Friends of Architecture to increase usage and volunteer support for a newly-completed one-mile section of Genesee Valley Greenway in the Village of Cuba.

 

Montezuma Heritage Park Erie Canal Towpath Trail, Cayuga County - assist the Town of Montezuma with creation and promotion of a network of trails linking the hamlet of Montezuma with the Seneca River and several historic Erie Canal sites.

 

Andes Trails, Delaware County - help Andes Works!  with the creation of a five-mile trail linking the Village of Andes to the Pepacton Reservoir.

 

Since launching Healthy Trails, Healthy People in 2004, PTNY has helped 38 communities in 34 counties with the development and promotion of 260 miles of trail across New York State. Healthy Trails, Healthy People is funded in part by a grant from the Healthy Heart Programof the NYS Department of Health. 

Got questions? Get answers.

Join new park and historic site Friends discussion forum

 

State park and historic site Friends groups have great ideas to share. To help facilitate greater networking and communications among Friends groups, PTNY has started an online discussion forum. The discussion forum is an opportunity for state park and historic site Friends organizations across the state to communicate with each other - sharing ideas, asking advice, learning from one another and building the strength of our parks movement. Join the discussion today (once there, click on "Join this group" in the right-hand column).  

 

Why Join?

  • Get help and advice from others across the state facing similar challenges.
  • Discuss the issues facing our state park system and Friends organizations.
  • Share ideas for strengthening Friends groups so that we can better protect and promote our parks and historic sites.

Take Action Today

 

Protect parks and trails from hydro-fracking

 

CTEC GuidebookThe NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) released a revised Draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement along with Proposed High-Volume Hydraulic Fracturing Regulations in September and is accepting comments on both until January 11. While the proposed regulations include a recommendation that surface drilling be banned on state-owned lands - including parks and trails - oil and gas lobbyists are calling on the Governor and the state to rescind the ban. Tell DEC to uphold the public trust and keep fracking out of state parks and trails. Learn more.  

 

Federal bike and pedestrian funding at risk

 

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee has approved a bipartisan two-year highway reauthorization bill (S. 1813) known as MAP-21(Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century). This bill will dramatically reduce the available funding for Transportation Enhancements (TE), the Recreational Trails Program (RTP) and Safe Routes to School(SR2S) by consolidating them into the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) fund along with bridge and highway programs. After 20 years, the dedicated 10 percent set-aside for bike and pedestrian programs has also been eliminated and states would be allowed to opt out of TEP, RTP, and SR2S and instead redirect funds to highway construction.  

 

This is one of the most serious challenges to bicycle and pedestrian programs since they were created 20 years ago. Read the response  from national biking and walking organizations.

 

The full Senate vote is imminent so please contact Senators Schumer and Gillibrand IMMEDIATELY. Ask them to offer an amendment to the MAP 21 bill to eliminate the opt-out provision and restore dedicated funding for biking and walking.

 

Sign petition for Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF)  

The Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) is America's most important conservation tool, investing offshore drilling revenues - not taxpayer dollars - to acquire lands within our national parks, forests, refuges, trails, and other federal lands and expanding and developing state and local parks and trails.  

 

Unfortunately, LWCF funds are being diverted from their intended uses and much less than the authorized $900 million a year is being spent on America's parks and outdoor recreation areas.

 

Parks & Trails New York is part of a coalition petitioning the White House to take action for full, dedicated and permanent funding for LWCF. If the petition gets 25,000 signatures by December 16, 2011, the White House will review it and respond! View and sign the petition now.

 

 

Celebrating Erie Canalway Trail

End-to-Enders

 

CTEC GuidebookHave you bicycled or walked the full 360-mile length of the Erie Canalway Trail between Buffalo and Albany? If so, we want to recognize and reward your achievement.

 

Anyone who has completed a journey along the entire Erie Canalway Trail, on bicycle or on foot, whether in one multi-day trip or in segments over time, will be recognized with a certificate, decal, and inclusion in the End-to-Ender Honor Roll .

 

The program is a joint effort of PTNY, the NYS Canal Corporation and the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor.

 

The first step is to register  as an End-to-Ender. You will be asked several questions about your trip and overall experience. We'd love to hear your stories and receive photos of your trip. Please send them to endtoenders@ptny.org . You can also put your images on our Flickr site.

 

Not yet an End-to-Ender? Begin planning your journey today!

Thank you to our Green Partner - Morton Trails

 

CTEC GuidebookPTNY's Green Partner, Morton Trails, plans, designs, and oversees the construction of sport and recreational trails for walking, running, road and mountain biking, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, horse riding, and other outdoor activities. Projects range from small community trails to world-class destination resorts and internationally-recognized competitive venues. Thanks, Morton Trails, for your support.

Local parks facing budget axe

 

CTEC Guidebook

As government budgets at all levels continue to shrink, parks are feeling the squeeze. Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino's  proposed 2012 budgetincludes significant cuts to parks and recreation. The proposal calls for cutting the parks department by 5%, including closing six nature centers and cutting funding for special events. Staffing would be eliminated and buildings will be closed at Cranberry Lake Preserve, Croton Point Nature Center, Read Wildlife Sanctuary, Lenoir Preserve, Marshlands Conservancy and Trailside Nature Museum.

 

Westchester County residents should contact their County.Legislator and County Executive Astorino to let them know that the nature centers, parks, and wildlife habitat are important to them. Visit Westchester County Parks and Recreation Department for more information on the sites.

 

 

Hoosic River Greenway celebrates a ribbon cutting

 

CTEC GuidebookOn December 4, supporters of the Hoosic River Greenway(HRG) gathered to celebrate the trail's groundbreaking, culminating six years of work.  Over the next year, the Village of Hoosick Falls will begin placing stone dust on the 2.5-mile corridor that follows the route of a former Pan Am rail line.  A conceptual master plan  developed for the project envisions the HRG providing the foundation for a riverfront park at the northern and southern ends of the Village. 

 

PTNY assisted the Village of Hoosick Falls with its work on the Greenway between 2006 and 2009 as part of its Healthy Trails, Healthy Peopleprogram. In 2009, PTNY also awarded the Hoosick River Watershed Association a capacity grant to develop the website for the Hoosic River Greenway.  

 

Iconic Letchworth State Park bridge to be demolished

 

New bridge offers no opportunities for pedestrians

 

BridgeAn iron railroad viaduct towering 245 feet above the Genesee River has been a destination spot since it was built in 1875 and a Letchworth State Park landmark from the time the park was created in 1907, but the historic structure may soon be gone.  NYS DOT has applied for almost $18 million in federal TIGER III funding and NYS has pledged $3.5 million to assist Norfolk Southern with the $39 million cost of removing the rail bridge and constructing a new one at approximately the same location. 

 

As it serves an active rail line, the public is not allowed on the bridge, but it nevertheless has always attracted visitors because it offers the best view of the falls and river gorge.  Despite the bridge's popularity with the public and its ability to link the east and west sides of the 14,000-acre park, often called the Grand Canyon of the East, the railroad has declined to install a pedestrian walkway on the new bridge and there are no plans to retain the existing bridge and use it as a pedestrian walkway and viewing platform. 

 

With more than $20 million in public funding being directed to this project, PTNY strongly encourages Norfolk Southern and NYSDOT to include a pedestrian walkway in any bridge solution so the public can at last legitimately and safely enjoy the magnificent views of the Genesee River gorge that they have sought for years.

 

Earthshare logo

  

Parks & Trails New York is a member of Earth Share New York, an alliance of leading nonprofit environmental organizations. For more information about workplace giving to Parks & Trails New York and Earth Share, check out www.earthshareny.org.

 

 

 DECEMBER 2011

 

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Support the parks and trails you love

 

Support Parks & Trails New York today with your secure online donation. Or mail a contribution to: Parks & Trails New York, 29 Elk Street, Albany, NY 12207.

 

Donations and membership dues are fully tax deductible

 

TrailFinder

 

Bethpage Parkway Bikeway

 

bethpage

 

Those not familiar with Long Island may be surprised that it offers first-rate trails for walking and bicycling. One of the most popular is the 6.8-mile paved Bethpage Parkway Bikeway, which connects the south shore's Massapequa Preserve to Bethpage State Park in Farmingdale. The trail accommodates walkers, cyclists, roller bladders, wheel chairs, and cross country skiers.

 

Bethpage Parkway Bikeway and other multi-use trails can be found on Parks & Trails New York's TrailFinder website.

 

Honoring New York's environmental pioneers

 

Pioneers 

PTNY honored New York's pioneers of environmental law with our George W. Perkins Award at a convivial and well-attended reception on November 17 at the University Club in NYC.

 

The George W. Perkins Award was established by Parks & Trails New York to honor outstanding environmental leadership. The Award is named for George W. Perkins, who, in his long-time commitment to New York's magnificent state park system, was a model of the best in environmental leadership and public service.

 

Make this the summer you do it

 

Registration for PTNY's two bike tours opens January 1

 

14th annual

Cycling the Erie Canal 

July 8-15, 2012

 

400-mile bicycle tour along the legendary Erie Canal.  

 

8th annual

Great Hudson Valley Pedal

July 31 - August 5, 2012:

 

200-mile bicycle tour from Albany to NYC through the picturesque and historic Hudson Valley.  

Winter GreenSpace Newsletter

CTEC Guidebook

 

Check out the winter issue of our GreenSpace newsletter.

 

Great Green Holiday Gifts

 

Stumped on what to get for those outdoorsy types on your list? Think about green gifts that keep on giving year-round.

 

PTNY Gift Membership

 

The perfect gift for all those park and trail lovers. Give the gift of membership. 

 

Passport to parks

 

For just $65, you can give someone the gift of many lovely days in NYS parks. The Empire Passport  is an annual pass providing unlimited day use vehicle entry to most of New York's state parks and recreational facilities.

 

America's Great Outdoors in New York

 

High Bridge 

Revitalizing Roberto Clemente State Park and the adjacent Harlem River and creating better land and water access to the Finger Lakes are the two NYS projects highlighted in an America's Great Outdoors report recently released by the Interior Department.

 

 

Outdoor Recreation critical to NYS economy

 

Following are a few statistics, courtesy of the Outdoor Industry Foundation, detailing how crucial outdoor recreation is to the NYS economy.

 

- Outdoor recreation contributes $11.3 billion to the state's tourism industry - over 25% overall.

 

- Over 130,000 NYS jobs are supported by active outdoor recreation. 

 

- Active outdoor recreation also generates nearly $800 million in tax revenue for the state.

 

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