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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2018 8:34 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:45 am
Posts: 617
Jack A. Roberson is the new Executive Director of the Adirondack Rail Preservation Society (ARPS):
Quote:
In an announcement sent to the press. President of the Board and Chief Executive Officer Bill Branson said: “Mr. Roberson joins the ARPS continuing a life-long career in the railroad industry. He brings expertise and experience in all aspects of operations, tourism marketing, and finance. His leadership will contribute greatly to implementing the long-term ARPS strategy to expand and improve rail passenger services into the Adirondack region.”

Roberson’s experience includes serving as the General Manager of the Machu-Picchu Andean Railway, General Manager of the San Luis & Rio Grande Railroad, and President and CEO of the Central Andean Railway (the largest heavy haul railroad in Peru running 100-miles from sea-level to 15,000 feet. Prior to that he was General Manager, Southern Peru Copper Corporation.
Link to the March 27, 2018 article in the Adirondack Almanack: Adirondack Scenic RR Names New Director


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Sat Mar 31, 2018 11:30 am 

Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:41 am
Posts: 3609
Location: Inwood, W.Va.
A friend of mine forwarded this, and said it is to be made public. It's a copy of a letter sent in regard to the Adirondack Scenic Railroad.

A reminder that written submissions are accepted at this email address until May SLMP_comments@apa.ny.gov

Quote:
This letter is from Ed Kanze, a strong supporter of trails with rails and a well-known naturalist and guide in the Adirondacks.

Dear Adirondack Park Agency,

I urge the A.P.A. and D.E.C., both agencies created to protect the environment of the state of New York, to assure that the rail corridor between Utica and Lake Placid remains what it was created to be originally: a corridor for public transportation and freight movement via railroads.

The scheme to restore rail travel to Tupper Lake, but destroy all possibility of it between Tupper and Lake Placid, is, in my view, madness. At a time when the climate grows warmer by the day, and when increasing numbers of young adults are choosing not to drive and to drive by public means instead, it is plainly wrongheaded and anti-environment to rip up the rails and replace them with an automobile-dependent tourist attraction, one that, if predictions of its popularity come anywhere near being realized, will require the building of vast parking lots to accommodate the cars that will come to park and bring riders to the so-called rail trail.

As the CEO and sole employee of a one-man guiding business with clients mainly coming from The Point on Upper Saranac Lake, the Lake Placid Lodge, and the High Peaks Resort, I can tell you that a great many of my clients voice strong interest in restored passenger rail service. This is true of clients who come to me from eastern cities, and also others who come from Europe and Asia. We would see a lot more of these folks in our hotels and restaurants, and create the possibility of having more hotels, restaurants, related businesses, and jobs in our communities if we had the possiblity of rail travel here from Chicago and the west and from the big cities of the eastern seaboard.

Yes, I've heard the tired, straw man arguments that rail travel is a relic of the past. Tell that to the Chinese, who are spending billions on improving their rail network, and to other countries around the world. Rail offers a whole new kind of travel. Those who advocate ripping up our Adirondack rails portray trains in the way they existed in the 1950s. A few years ago, when I last rode Amtrak downstate to Westchester County, the train was packed, and it was chockablock with people sipping good coffee and working on their tablets, smart phones, and laptops. The argument has been made that no one wants to sit on a train from NYC anymore and be stuck for hours, doing nothing. This is a false argument, a classic straw man erected up to be knocked down by the slick but hollow logic of rail trail creation. You don't sit on a modern train and do nothing for six or eight hours. That might better describe what you'd do in a car, driving up here to park with thousands of other cars at a rail trail trailhead. On a modern train you work (I'm also a writer, and I can work without restriction on trains now that they've got WiFi) or play and relax and arrive refreshed.

The failure of the 1980 rail restoration is often cited as an argument against bringing back rails today. This is another straw man. That misconceived effort was badly bungled, bringing slow-moving trains over a marginal railbed, with no large-scale infrastructure investment and very little marketing. Of course it failed! That was also 38 years ago! America was at the height of its infatuation with the automobile. Very few had any sense of the automobile's role in overheating the earth's climate. Cars were multiplying in driveways across the land, and young people were lining up to get driver's licenses. But times have changed. Most of the rail trail advocates I know have, as I do, gray hair. They're out of touch with just how much the coming generations of young people want to turn climate change around and inhabit a greener world.

So let's keep and restore the rails and bring back passenger trains, and welcome tourists from Europe, Asia, the eastern seaboard, the Midwest, and elsewhere to come here in green high-tech style. And let's promote the railroad and offer tourists packages that combine rail tickets with nights in hotels such as the newly refurbished Hotel Saranac. Guides like me will eagerly join in the effort. And to make sure this railroad is viable, let's not commit the monumental stupidity (I apologize for that word but don't see a way around it) of cutting off the line at Tupper Lake, where at present relatively few tourists are bound, and prevent trains from reaching the high-demand tourist destinations of Lake Placid and Saranac Lake. We have thousands of miles of footpaths and rural roads for hiking and biking in the Adirondacks. We do not need another trail. We need public transportation! Those spoiling to create a first-rate bike trail need look no further than the old Delaware and Hudson line through the Bloomingdale Bog. This is a rail trail already. How many cyclists use it? But it could be improved and promoted, and cyclists and walkers could travel along it from Saranac Lake to Bloomingdale to Onchiota and beyond. It passes through prime habitat for moose, gray jays, boreal chickadees, yellow-bellied flycatchers, and spruce grouse. If the Adirondacks need a world class rail trail, let that be the one! Leave the Utica to Lake Placid rail corridor alone. It offers the Adirondack region a greener future, not a trail that will destroy our last best hope for public transportation to reach the Adirondacks' most popular tourist destinations.

Please, make a decision that we can all be proud of.

With thanks for your efforts,

Ed Kanze
Seventh generation Adirondacker, writer, naturalist, videographer, and licensed NYS Guide


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2018 12:15 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:41 am
Posts: 3609
Location: Inwood, W.Va.
This was not supposed to get wider distribution until tomorrow, but the cat got out of the bag anyway, so here's a new development in our favor.

Quote:
On April 11, 2016, the ARPS Board of Directors filed with the Supreme Court of New York State, Franklin County, a petition seeking to reverse the actions by the NYS Departments of Transportation, Environmental Conservation and the Adirondack Park Agency that redefined the Remsen-Lake Placid rail travel corridor. The petition sought a ruling that NYS acted in an arbitrary and capricious manner that damaged the ARPS and was not consistent with the State Land Master Plan.

On September 24, 2017 Judge Main, acting Supreme Court justice, ruled that the actions by the NYS agencies were indeed arbitrary and capricious. He ruled 1) that the 1996 UMP remains the operative document providing guidance for the corridor; 2) that DEC is enjoined from any track removal or alterations until all of the court’s findings have been remedied and; 3) that “the May 17, 2016 approval of the 2016 UMP is annulled and vacated in its entirety, and in each and every part.”

On December 1, 2017 the NYS Attorney General filed a notice of intent to appeal, to reserve the option to appeal the ruling by Judge Main. The final deadline for the Attorney General to provide information to support an appeal was April 6, 2018.

The Appellate Division, Third Department, in Albany County has confirmed that NYS DID NOT file a timely appeal or information to explain why a further delay was needed. Pending a ruling by the Appellate Court, NYS can no longer appeal Judge Main’s ruling.

The Adirondack Park Agency has begun a process to amend the Adirondack Park State Land Master Plan to redefine the nature of the Remsen – Lake Placid corridor and any future rail corridor NYS may acquire. It will have no effect on Judge Main’s ruling. It is the beginning of a long process to create an amendment, with an uncertain outcome.

The 1996 Unit Management Plan remains the authoritative and guiding document for the R-LP Corridor. The Board of Directors of ARPS intends to operate trains as in the past. We look forward to working with our volunteers to provide customers of the Adirondack Scenic Railroad with an enjoyable and memorable experience.

THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR CONTINUING SUPPORT.

Bill Branson on behalf of the Board of Directors


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Sat May 12, 2018 12:00 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 3:41 am
Posts: 3609
Location: Inwood, W.Va.
Although the news itself is a bit old, the article does cover the situation in more detail than is typical of what we see.

http://www.suncommunitynews.com/article ... path-case/

One of the interesting things that has popped up is how crowded the roads and trails in the Adirondacks are. As was the case at the Grand Canyon, it can be argued parts of the Adirondacks are being loved to death. Could the railroad help alleviate some of this, allowing visitors to other areas of the park while limiting some of the impacts?

https://www.facebook.com/AdirondackCoun ... yOUW-crhWM

https://www.adirondackcouncil.org/page/ ... -1081.html


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Sat May 12, 2018 4:31 pm 

Joined: Sat May 07, 2016 1:12 am
Posts: 109
In layman's terms I understand it says "the rails will stay, but to include a trail alongside the rail is unk at this point".

I have one important question regarding the rail line. Who is going to pay to repair the whole line? A modest tourist line trying to repair vintage equipment and hopefully add steam isn't capable to spend millions to repair and upgrade the line for daily regular use before the lines appear at the depot to haul 500+ people daily across the line to ride bikes, canoe, etc.


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Sat May 12, 2018 7:08 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:45 am
Posts: 617
JayZee wrote:
In layman's terms I understand it says "the rails will stay

No, that is not what it says. The state is still planning on scrapping the northern-most 34 miles of the line.


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:02 pm 

Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2015 1:58 am
Posts: 40
Location: Ramona, Calif.
Dougvv wrote:
Hi,

The railbus suggestion sounds like the reincarnation of the old Rio Grande Southern (narrow gauge) Galloping Geese that traveled Colorado from about 1930-1951 carrying passengers, mail, and LCL.

Three geese are preserved operational at the Colorado RR Museum, one is at Knotsberry Farm (operational), one is in Dolores (operational), and the last is owned by the City of Telluride currently in Ridgway, CO (Ridgway RR Museum) being restored to operational condition. They could not stem the tide of the fall of the RGS in 1951.

The McKeen Railcar company was resurected and has been manufacturing a few railbusses for various places including South America. One rail bus targeted for a 3 foot gauge railroad in South America was tested on the Cumbres and Toltec Scenic RR a few years ago.

Doug vV


Doug, No the McKeen Motor Car Company has not been resurrected. Where did you hear this information?


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:34 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:19 am
Posts: 5698
Location: southeastern USA
Doug may be confusing McKeen with the move by Steven Torrico and Royce Kershaw to reactivate the Edwards car Co probably 12-15 years back. I'm not sure how that effort turned out.

_________________
Santayana: "He who does not remember the past is condemned to repeat it."
Corollary: "He who does is doomed to watch those who don't repeat it anyway."


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2019 9:58 am 

Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 9:29 am
Posts: 251
The New Edwards company died the usual death that such operations do....
There were many reasons for it, but probably the most important one being not realizing the true size, or lack thereof, of your market....
Another reason being not realizing just why everyone else is charging $600k+, when you're charging $300k or less....


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2019 12:00 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:45 am
Posts: 617
M.M.C.C.H.S. wrote:
Doug, No the McKeen Motor Car Company has not been resurrected. Where did you hear this information?
The poster you are responding to, DougV, passed away in March 2018. His obituary: Douglas Edgar Van Veelen November 14, 1955 – March 11, 2018


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2019 1:39 pm 

Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2015 1:58 am
Posts: 40
Location: Ramona, Calif.
Chris Webster wrote:
M.M.C.C.H.S. wrote:
Doug, No the McKeen Motor Car Company has not been resurrected. Where did you hear this information?
The poster you are responding to, DougV, passed away in March 2018. His obituary: Douglas Edgar Van Veelen November 14, 1955 – March 11, 2018


Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't know. I occasionally search "McKeen" and see what information turns up.


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Wed Apr 10, 2019 2:09 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 12:15 am
Posts: 548
Chris Webster wrote:
JayZee wrote:
In layman's terms I understand it says "the rails will stay

No, that is not what it says. The state is still planning on scrapping the northern-most 34 miles of the line.



Any further developments on this line/trail?


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 10:49 am 

Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:45 am
Posts: 617
An April 4, 2019 article in the Post-Star:
Quote:
SARANAC LAKE — The Tri-Lakes tracks of the Remsen-Lake Placid Travel Corridor will remain idle this summer.

Last year, the Adirondack Rail Preservation Society, which operated tourist trains between Saranac Lake and Lake Placid under the Adirondack Scenic Railroad name between 2000 and 2016, said it wanted to start a rail bike business out of Saranac Lake. However, state Department of Transportation — which oversees the corridor — now says ARPS will only operate on the southern end of the line, from its base in Utica north to the Old Forge area.

“The Adirondack Railway Preservation Society permit has not changed,” DOT spokeswoman Jennifer Post wrote in an email. “ARPS can continue to run the same service as last year between Remsen and Big Moose.”
Link to full article: Tri-Lakes tracks in Adirondacks will remain without rail bikes or trains


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 12:32 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:45 am
Posts: 617
A March 18, 2019 article in the Post Star:
Quote:
RAY BROOK — A controversial state project to convert an Adirondack railroad into a trail will have detailed plans available for review soon, according to the regional head of the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

DEC Region 5 Director Bob Stegemann said after last week’s meeting of the state Adirondack Park Agency that the DEC and state Department of Transportation expect to have their unit management plan on the Remsen-Lake Placid Travel Corridor come before the APA in the next several months, but he did not have a firm timeline.

That plan could allow for the removal of rails in the corridor between Lake Placid and Tupper Lake, to be replaced by a trail for snowmobiling, cycling, jogging, etc.

The DOT oversees the Remsen-Lake Placid Travel Corridor, and in 2016 the DOT and DEC released a unit management plan that would have upgraded the tracks from Remsen to Tupper Lake while replacing the tracks with a multi-use trail between Tupper Lake and Lake Placid.

Link to full article: Adirondack railroad trail plan to be unveiled


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 Post subject: Re: Adirondack Park Agency oks scrapping RR line to Lake Pla
PostPosted: Sat Jun 08, 2019 11:06 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:45 am
Posts: 617
Two excerpts from a May 30, 2019 article from the Adirondack Daily Enterprise that is published on the Watertown Daily Time's website.

Quote:
SARANAC INN — Earlier this spring, a small stream flowing out of the St. Regis Canoe Area caused a major washout under the railroad tracks of the Remsen-Lake Placid Travel Corridor. The state — which owns the corridor — has no set time frame for repairs, but a spokeswoman said a fix is in the works.
and
Quote:
The northern end of the corridor is currently idle north of Big Moose, regardless of the washout. Snowmobilers use the corridor in the winter, and the Adirondack Scenic Railroad used to use this part of it to move equipment between Utica and Lake Placid from 2000 to 2016, when it operated tourist trains in summer and fall between Saranac Lake and Lake Placid. But the railroad’s permit from the state only allows operations at the southern end of the line this year.

This is not the only part of the state-owned travel corridor where deteriorated track conditions have been reported. Also, the status of the tracks as a whole is up in the air. DOT and the state Department of Environmental Conservation are expected to release a unit management plan this summer that is likely to call for removal of the tracks between Lake Placid and Tupper Lake in favor of a multi-use trail.
Link: No time frame for repair of washed-out train tracks


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