Better Planning for the Adirondack Park

Environmental Advocates Support this Bill

Explanation: 

This bill amends the executive law, in relation to preserving ecological integrity, wildlife and open space in the Adirondack Park.

The Adirondack Park Agency (APA) was created in 1971 by the NYS Legislature, and is responsible for maintaining the protection of the forest preserve and overseeing development proposals of privately-owned lands. The APA’s regulations have not seen significant amendments since the 1970s. This bill incorporates current conservation science and land use planning techniques that are far more advanced than the original regulations from the 1970s, so it is a much-needed update to those early regulations intended to preserve the integrity of the park’s natural resources.

In particular, the bill incorporates a “conservation development” approach to rural land use planning and development, with the goal of minimizing rural sprawl, strip development and forest fragmentation and encouraging contiguous open spaces, healthy riparian buffers and connectivity of protected areas and forests. The bill would incorporate these principles for residential subdivisions in areas classified as low intensity use (minimum 25 lots), rural use (minimum 10 lots) and resource management (minimum 5 lots), and the bill also includes provisions for a density bonus program.

As the largest park in the continental United States, the Adirondacks is one of New York State’s greatest treasures. We need to protect the critical land, forests and waters in the park through smart and sustainable conservation planning and development.

Summary: 

This bill amends the executive law, in relation to preserving ecological integrity, wildlife and open space in the Adirondack Park.

Memo #: 

61