“The scale of this project is enabling us to collectively achieve significant ecological protections, while allowing for a variety of compatible uses, as well as creating some really exciting, world-class recreational opportunities,” said Michael Carr, executive director of the Nature Conservancy’s Adirondack Chapter.
The Nature Conservancy bought the entire 161,000-acre property from Finch Pruyn in 2007; 90,000 acres were sold to a private company for timber management.
The sale of a total 69,000 acres to New York state will take place over five years; it began in 2012.
The State Department of Environmental Conservation and the Adirondack Park Agency are working together to plan for the future classification of the former Finch lands.
DEC’s Proposal for Public Access and State Land Classification for the entire 69,000-acre property is based upon input from local governments and other stakeholders. It has been submitted it to the APA and to park stakeholder groups.
The APA will release a draft land classification plan later this year.
A public-comment period will follow, with public hearings conducted before the final recommendations are sent to the governor for approval.
With land classifications in place, DEC will develop unit management plans to guide long-term public and administrative use of the property.
“The acquisition of these tracts will increase hiking opportunities and provide direct access to the Upper Hudson River from the Newcomb Town Beach,” Newcomb Town Supervisor George Cannon said in the release.
“Attracting more visitors to the interior should increase economic opportunities for Adirondack communities.”