Cautioning Sen. Little about rail trail plan

To the editor:

Dear Sen. Elizabeth O’C. Little:

The following is about the proposed removal of the railroad line from Lake Placid to Tupper Lake.

I live in Ray Brook (between Saranac Lake and Lake Placid) and as a result, most of my shopping and communication is in the village of Saranac Lake. Each time I must cross the railroad to be in Saranac Lake, I have seen mothers and their children hiking in summertime and skiing or snowshoeing along the track. Of course, people know the times that the railroad will be busy.

I cannot comprehend snowmobiles slowing down, especially when rounding corners to be able to avoid hitting children playing along the track. The railroad line is one place that people can go hiking, skiing and berry picking without having to pay for the right to do so. I have also been informed by people in the know that the trail to be improved will have stones as a track, which will not accommodate regular bicycles. So only mountain bikes will be able to use the trail, and common bikes will still have to use the highway.

But above all — this track has been used in the past for firemen to use (with the correct rail-accommodating vehicles) to help get needed equipment to areas that are inaccessible by trucks. It has also been used by National Grid to bring some of its equipment for fixing power outages with their rail vehicles.

Also, what if we have a terror emergency and a lot of people, food, medical supplies need to be sent to our area? We have plenty of hotels — but need the food, medical supplies, etc., for such an emergency.

How much money will be spent for 34 miles of change? It will cost $12 for every tie that is torn up to go to the dump. Dirt will have to be brought in to widen spots near the river. There is the labor to remove nails and track. The amount of money used to build this would certainly benefit our schools, our infrastructure and the poor in this area. Who will be able to maintain it? Who will be enforcing the law as to hours to be used?

Your friend Shirley Seney said she could hear the snowmobiles (which have been using the track regularly in the winter) from her house. The train goes through only three times a day. Snowmobiles will be going through at all hours and racing to boot. The track in Saranac Lake and a small pat of Lake Placid go right past a lot of houses.

Thank you for your considering the above,

Rosalind R. Deitz

Ray Brook


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