New Rail Trail stop in Lake Placid is a good move

The village of Lake Placid is moving forward with plans to purchase a $249,000 property by the old railyard on Station Street and, working with the Open Space Institute, convert it into a new trailhead for the Adirondack Rail Trail. This is an exciting project and one that showcases the best of what so-called “public-private partnerships,” or collaborations between government agencies and the public sector, can achieve to improve the quality of life in a community.

This property purchase will be paid for through the state Environmental Protection Fund; altogether, the project has received a $300,000 grant from the state Department of Environmental Conservation’s Smart Growth Grant program, a $500,000 EPF grant, a $50,000 grant from North Elba’s Local Enhancement and Advancement Fund and an unspecified grant from the Cloudsplitter Foundation, Enterprise Staff Writer Sydney Emerson reported this week. OSI will be tasked with managing most of the improvements to the property.

The plans for the new trailhead include a picnic pavilion, year-round restrooms, interpretive signage and a parking area.

The hope is that with these improvements, not only will Rail Trail users have another amenity, but some may decide to stop in at the Lake Placid-North Elba Historical Society’s museum, which is located in the former Lake Placid Railroad Station and open from Memorial Day weekend to Columbus Day weekend.

Construction on the bulk of the trailhead’s major amenities probably won’t start until next year, OSI’s Senior Vice President for Communications Eileen Larrabee told the Enterprise — OSI is still $300,000 away from its $1.55 million fundraising goal for this project.

We applaud the village and OSI for its work on this project so far. We hope that OSI successfully fundraises the money needed to make this project come to fruition. It’s clear that the Adirondack Rail Trail is getting a lot of use and having this sort of stop in Lake Placid could have a variety of benefits both for users and local businesses.


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