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APA addresses subdivision, boat wash, utility poles, rail trail

RAY BROOK — At the second day of its regular monthly meeting on Friday, the state Adirondack Park Agency board approved a subdivision in Black Brook, a comment period for a boat wash and a general permit for the replacement of utility poles.

The agency board also learned that a state plan to convert the train tracks between Tupper Lake and Lake Placid into a multi-use trail still needs some work.

The APA board approved the subdivision in Black Brook, which would create seven lots out of one parcel. Two people spoke against the plan during the public comment period, although the comment period takes place after final votes.

The board also approved a generic general permit for the replacement of utility poles. This permit is issued to utility companies and municipalities that own or have rights of way where poles are placed. Additional permits may be needed if the pole is in a wetland or set to be over 40 feet.

Also approved was a public comment period for an amendment to the Blue Mountain Lake Wild Forest, which will end on Oct. 30 and is a joint comment period for the APA and state Department of Environmental Conservation. The amendment would allow a boat washing station to permanently remain in its current location in a pull-off near Lake Durant on state Route 30. The station includes a storage shed where equipment is kept and has been in place on a temporary basis since 2017.

Rail trail

The DEC and state Department of Transportation are getting close to finalizing their plan to convert the section of the Remsen-Lake Placid Travel Corridor between Lake Placid and Tupper Lake into a multi-use trail, according to DEC and APA staff.

During the September APA board meeting, DEC Region 5 Director Bob Stegemann said the plan had been submitted to APA staff and could come before the board as early as this month. However, the plan was not on the agenda, and APA staff said Friday there are still issues to work out.

“Different pieces from different agencies have not come together yet,” the APA’s Rick Weber said. “OPRHP (the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation) has their own protocol; DOT is still working on the specifics of the rail removal plan. It will be ready as soon as possible.

“Because of the complexity, it would be a disservice to not have all of these issues ironed out in the plan, but we’re close.”

The general outline of the plan has been in place since 2016, but that plan was shot down in court when a judge ruled, essentially, that a travel corridor — typically including roads and train tracks — cannot simply be changed into a trail. However, late last year the APA approved a change to the definition of a travel corridor in the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan.

Local Government Day

The APA board is next set to meet on Thursday and Friday, Nov. 14 and 15. The APA also announced that its annual Local Government Day Conference will take place at the Crowne Plaza Resort in Lake Placid on Wednesday and Thursday, April 29 and 30 next year.