As Adirondack land deals move forward, questions remain over use
State officials are moving forward with two land purchases in the Adirondacks totaling nearly 10,000 acres. State Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens will be on Prospect Mountain near Lake George later this morning unveiling one of the deals.
Both of these conservation efforts have been in the works for years.
The biggest, involving roughly 9300 acres of the former Finch Pruyn timber lands in the Adirondacks, includes parcels of land in Essex, Hamilton, Warren and Washington counties — including the famous ice meadow along the upper Hudson River and OK Slip falls.
The state paid roughly $6.3 million for the properties.
In a statement, Governor Andrew Cuomo praised the project, describing it as a "fitting way to celebrate Earth Week" that "will create tourism opportunities."
The Adirondack Nature Conservancy brokered the deal. According to state officials, the group agreed to grant the state half a million dollars to support "community connections and economic development in towns affected by this expansion of the Park's forest preserve."
One question going forward is how these lands will be classified and what kind of recreation will be allowed.
Indian Lake Supervisor Brian Wells said in a statement that the project "could lead to a resurrection in the park" if classifications are handled "with local input from the communities."
A separate land deal, unrelated to the Finch Pruyn project will also be announced today in the Lake George area.