LGA receives $300k grant

LAKE GEORGE The Lake George Association has announced that the environmental non-profit has received a $300,000 grant award through the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP). The money will go toward the acquisition of the site formerly known as Gaslight Village, which will ultimately be the location for a proposed, large-scale environmental project. According to Executive Director Walt Lender, the grant award will defray some of the $4.1 million asking price for the 12 acres, currently owned by the Charles R. Wood Foundation. The property consists of two portions, which straddle West Brook, one of Lake Georges major tributaries. The highly-developed West Brook watershed contributes 50 percent of the stormwater runoff to the lakes southern basin. Since the lake flows from south to north, these negative effects are becoming more evident throughout the entire lake. This is a win-win situation all around, said Lender. We are grateful to New York State and our elected officials for their support, and we look forward to working with them as partners. The non-profit Lake George Association, the applicant for the OPRHP grant, has been working jointly with an unprecedented public-private coalition, including Warren County, the Town and Village of Lake George, as well as the Fund for Lake George and the Lake George Land Conservancy. The latter two groups, like the LGA, are non-profits working to protect Lake Georges exceptional water quality. Warren County has offered $1.3 million toward the asking price. The Village of Lake George has approved an offer of $350,000 toward the deal. The Town of Lake George has verbally offered $700,000, and the three environmental groups will split the remainder. Acquisition of the property is the first step toward undertaking a project that will transform the unused land into a park that will serve many purposes. A significant portion of land will be used to restore a pollutant-filtering wetland and to create a complex series of stormwater management devices to capture sand and sediment before they reach the lake, where there is a growing delta at the mouth of West Brook in Lake George. As the project engineers, The Chazen Companies will provide technical assistance, with guidance from the Warren County Soil and Water Conservation District. The remaining land will be comprised of bike and fitness trails, interpretive signage, and vast open public fields, which could also be used as staging areas for a number of large events, such as the Americade motorcycle rally and the NYS Fire Chiefs Convention. The Gaslight Village property has remained vacant and unused for over 20 years. Several dilapidated buildings, slabs of crumbling pavement and sun-bleached signs remain from the sites former days as an amusement park. Many consider the site a blight on the largely picturesque Adirondack landscape, a wasteland in the middle of the thriving, resort community of Lake George. When completed, this project will have a major impact on improving the water quality in the South Basin and, over time, the entire lake, said Lender. What makes it truly special is the fact that it will be a tremendous asset to the community as a beautiful park, an attractive gateway to a wonderful region. This will be a real legacy for future generations.

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