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Bike trails could boost tourism, relieve traffic

LAKE GEORGE - A network of bike trails in Lake George village could attract a considerable number of two-wheeled tourists while relieving congestion and making the resort village more family friendly, a local business owner told the town board Monday.

John Carr, owner of Adirondack Pub and Brewery, is seeking to establish a network of bike trails in Lake George, and Monday he asked the town to support his effort.

His initiative includes opening up Prospect Mountain Highway to bicycle traffic, establishing bike lanes on state Rte. 9 and establishing a bike route from the village up the Prospect Mountain access road and ending at the Lake George recreation complex.

Carr said many resort destinations are developing bike trails for family recreation and ecological transportation, citing examples of trails from Alexandria Va. to Washington DC, from Venice Beach to Santa Monica Calif., or along the city waterfront of Burlington, Vt.

"Imagine families riding bikes from Hampton Inn to Million Dollar Beach and back," he said. "This would be like what other destinations around the nation are now developing to attract tourists."

Town board members expressed support for his ideas.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation does not permit bicycles to travel up the Prospect Mountain Highway, as it only allows vehicles.

He said this DEC regulation was anti-environmental, discouraged enviro-tourism and restricted access to various prime mountain-biking areas.

Although the DEC said they have prohibited biking on Prospect Mountain "for bikers' safety," Carr said that bikers who possess the skills to complete the two-mile climb would be able to safely navigate the descent.

The Prospect Mountain Highway provides access to a series of well-maintained mountain-biking trails that then connect with Big Hollow Rd. which would bring ambitious two-wheeled trail riders back to the north end of the village, he said.

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