Adirondack town wants state to replace railway with trail - KMSP-TV

Adirondack town wants state to replace railway with trail

Posted: Updated:
Dick Beamish of Saranac Lake, a member of the Adirondack Recreational Trail Advocates, stands on deteriorating railroad tracks on a causeway across Lake Clear in Saranac Lake, N.Y., July 26, 2013. (AP photo/Mary Esch) Dick Beamish of Saranac Lake, a member of the Adirondack Recreational Trail Advocates, stands on deteriorating railroad tracks on a causeway across Lake Clear in Saranac Lake, N.Y., July 26, 2013. (AP photo/Mary Esch)

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. (AP) -- After federal wetland rules scuttled a $2.6 million project to create a biking and hiking trail along train tracks between two Adirondack resort villages, town officials have thrown their support behind a controversial proposal to remove the rails and create a multi-use trail bisecting the Adirondack Park.

The town board in North Elba this week shelved plans for the trail parallel to the tracks between Saranac Lake and Lake Placid, where a tourist train runs in summer. The action, ending 10 years of planning, came after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers determined that extensive additional engineering and costly environmental review would be required because of surrounding wetlands.

The board's move comes as state officials are holding public hearings on what to do with the 119-mile rail corridor bisecting the Adirondack Park from Remsen to Lake Placid. Tourist trains run only at the ends, with the vast midsection deteriorating.

Railroad buffs and some local officials want the state to renovate the tracks or at least allow the tourist train to stay as it is. But a large coalition including snowmobile clubs, mountain bikers, hiking groups and businesses has been urging the state to sell the rails for scrap and use the money to create a year-round multi-use trail through the heart of the Adirondack wilderness.

In hopes of striking a compromise, railroad enthusiasts have pushed the idea of building a trail beside the tracks. But trail advocates have maintained that the numerous lakes, rivers and wetlands along the route would make that impossible.

In a resolution endorsing the proposal to replace the tracks with a trail, the North Elba board said a bike path from Lake Placid to Saranac Lake will be used and enjoyed by a diverse group of users and expand economic opportunities throughout the region.

The state departments of transportation and environmental conservation are holding the last public hearings on the issue on Monday in Utica and Tuesday in Tupper Lake.

  • New York State NewsNew York State NewsMore>>

  • Soldier who killed herself at Va. Army base was from Yonkers

    Soldier who killed herself at Va. Army base was from Yonkers

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 1:28 PM EDT2014-08-27 17:28:56 GMT

    The Army has identified the soldier who barricaded herself in a building at a Virginia base and then fatally shot herself in the head.  Fort Lee officials on Wednesday say it was 33-year-old Sgt. 1st Class Paula M. Walker of Yonkers

    The Army has identified the soldier who barricaded herself in a building at a Virginia base and then fatally shot herself in the head.  Fort Lee officials on Wednesday say it was 33-year-old Sgt. 1st Class Paula M. Walker of Yonkers

  • Beheaded goat found in Westchester

    Beheaded goat found in Westchester

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 4:37 PM EDT2014-08-26 20:37:42 GMT
    The carcasses of beheaded birds, goat, and other animals were found in bags dumped on the side of a road in Westchester County, the local SPCA said. The bags were found Monday at the intersection of Route 129 and Underhill Avenue in Yorktown.
    The carcasses of beheaded birds, goat, and other animals were found in bags dumped on the side of a road in Westchester County, the local SPCA said. The bags were found Monday at the intersection of Route 129 and Underhill Avenue in Yorktown.
  • Woman running for Seneca Nation presidency

    Woman running for Seneca Nation presidency

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 2:50 PM EDT2014-08-26 18:50:33 GMT
    A Seneca Nation Council member is running to become the first female president of the western New York tribe. Darlene Miller announced her candidacy on Monday, saying she wants to unify the divided Seneca Nation and get back to traditional ways and values.
    A Seneca Nation Council member is running to become the first female president of the western New York tribe. Darlene Miller announced her candidacy on Monday, saying she wants to unify the divided Seneca Nation and get back to traditional ways and values.
Powered by WorldNow

KMSP-TV
11358 Viking Drive
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Phone: (952) 944-9999
Fax: (952) 942-0455

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices