DEC Launches Initiative to Develop Unique Lodging Network to Connect Communit ies in the Adirondacks – News from the NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation

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DEC Launches Initiative to Develop Unique Lodging Network to Connect Communities in the Adirondacks

Lodging ties to Multi-use Trail That Will Connect Visitors to Adirondacks' Vast Natural Resources

New York is launching a new initiative to create a multiple use "Hut-to-Hut" recreation trail system that will directly link lodging and other local visitor amenities with public lands within the 'Upper Hudson Recreation Hub' of the Adirondacks, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Acting Commissioner Marc Gerstman announced today. This area encompasses the 5 towns in the heart of the Adirondack Park, including Newcomb, Minerva, Indian Lake, Long Lake and North Hudson.

Multi-use Hut-to-Hut trail systems draw visitors seeking a destination-based experience where they can visit for more than a day at a time by providing access to lodging and amenities along the way. When complete, this new recreational opportunity in this region of the Park will give another economic boost to the Adirondack community by creating incentives for the expansion of local lodging and amenities for visitors.

"Governor Cuomo is committed to making the Adirondacks a destination for tourists in New York State." Acting Commissioner Gerstman said, "The outcome of the Upper Hudson Recreation Hut-to-Hut initiative will be a workable blue print to accommodate improved public access to Forest Preserve and conservation easement lands coupled with lodging, for the benefit of tourists, sportsmen and women, outdoor enthusiasts of all types and the people and communities of the 5 towns region of the Adirondack Park."

DEC has engaged Leading E.D.G.E., LLC to develop a proposed path for the Hut-to-Hut trail system, aligned with existing and potential lodging (huts.) Leading E.D.G.E. will work cooperatively with DEC, the Adirondack Park Agency and New York State Department of State and the local towns on their ongoing efforts to expand outdoor recreational opportunities in the Adirondack Park. The proposal they shape coupled with ideas for implementation will be shared with the public for review and comment early next year.

In recent years New York State, with the full cooperation of local municipalities, is embarking on a number of plans to knit the state-managed lands with communities and private holdings that complement one another. Stakeholders such as the towns, the Common Ground Alliance, conservation organizations, State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry, and the Adirondack Park Agency are working on a number of planning activities to accomplish the integration of state lands with private and municipal holdings for the economic benefit of the region and the environmental protection of the Adirondack Park.

Hamilton County Board of Supervisors Chair Bill Farber said, "This Hut-to-Hut initiative will recognize existing visitor services and accommodation infrastructure needs within the communities and identify the gaps in connecting recreation opportunities on public and conservation easement lands to the amenities located in communities."

"Establishment of a Hut-to-Hut Trail network within the Upper Hudson Recreation Hub will provide a unique experience for visitors to our 5 Towns and help to improve our local economies," said George Canon, Supervisor of the town of Newcomb. "We appreciate the efforts of Governor Cuomo and the staff at DEC to enhance the Adirondacks for visitors and the local residents."

"The town of North Hudson is very pleased with the DEC's new initiative of creating a new multi-use recreational trail system linked with lodging and other visitor amenities connecting the 5 Towns Upper Hudson Recreation Hub," said Ron Moore, Supervisor of the town of North Hudson. "This exciting new outdoor recreational opportunity linking the towns of North Hudson, Newcomb, Minerva, Indian Lake and Long Lake further demonstrates the commitment of Governor Cuomo and the DEC to generating additional tourism dollars, create new business opportunities and jobs for our communities."

"The Hut-to-Hut trail is very exciting for all our towns," said Steve McNally, Supervisor of the town of Minerva. "Having the ability for people to get from one town to another will be a great benefit for all of us. Each of our towns have limited accommodations and services. Being connected via the trail will make us a better destination for travelers. Governor Cuomo and DEC are helping to bring new opportunities to our communities."

"The Hut-to-Hut initiative is a new and exciting concept to further connect visitors to the Adirondacks," said Brian Wells, Supervisor of the town of Indian Lake. "The amazing resources within the 'Upper Hudson Recreation Hub' will now be more accessible to many more people. The benefits of a multiple use recreational trail system tied to each community will be a four season economic boost. The town of Indian Lake fully supports the initiative and look forwards to all of benefits that it will bring, not only to Indian Lake, but to all of the communities in the 5 Towns Upper Hudson Recreation Hub."

"We are eagerly looking forward to the creation of this new recreation trail system that will connect the 5 Towns of the Upper Hudson Recreation Hub," said Clark Seaman, Supervisor of the town of Long Lake. "The new trail would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of the Governor's office and DEC staff who are committed to implementing the Governor's vision of increased tourism in this region."

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