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Ulster County has waited 100 years

Its time to open the Ashokan Reservoir Trail!

In December 2013, Ulster County Executive Mike Hein and
the New York City Department of Environmental Protection
(NYCDEP) announced a landmark agreement in principle to
allow conversion of the County-owned Ulster & Delaware
(U&D) railroad corridor along the Ashokan Reservoir into a
new public recreational trail for walking, running, bicycling,
snowshoeing, cross country skiing and other non-motorized
uses. The trail will be created on an 11.5 mile section of the
underutilized U&D corridor, which has not seen freight,
passenger, or tourist trains in nearly four decades. The trail
will open the northern shore of the Ashokan Reservoir to the
public, without fee or permit, for the first time since the
Reservoir was put into service in 1915. This historic
agreement allows redevelopment of the unused U&D segment
to trail only and provides significant NYCDEP financial support for development of a world-class rail trail.

MOA Provisions:

$2.5 Million in NYCDEP Grants

Support for $1 Million in

Catskill Watershed Corp Grants

NYCDEP Funding &

Construction of Trailheads with
Parking and Sanitary Facilities

Joint Marketing of Ashokan

Trail to New York City residents

Bike/ Pedestrian Improvements

to NYCDEP Bridges

Protection of NYCDEP Water

Quality and Environment

Preservation of Countys
Permanent U&D Rail Easement

In August 2014, the Ulster County Legislature adopted Resolution

No. 275, establishing a policy supporting the conversion of this
segment of the U&D corridor into trail only. Pursuant to this policy,
Ulster County negotiated a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with
the City of New York to formalize the agreement in principle and
advance the opening of the northern Ashokan Reservoir lands to the
public for the first time in a century.
On April 20, 2015, the City of New York approved the final MOA
that had been negotiated with Ulster County over more than a year,
and the authorization to sign the agreement will now head to the
Ulster County Legislature for consideration. If approved, the MOA
will facilitate the development of a public trail along an area
previously accessible by permit only, and it will also provide millions
of dollars in NYCDEP funding for trail planning and construction.
Public trailheads will be funded, designed, constructed and operated
by NYCDEP under the MOA provisions.
Opening a scenic public recreational trail along the north shore of the
Ashokan Reservoir will significantly boost tourism to the Route 28
corridor and Catskill communities, increase recreational opportunities
for Ulster County residents and visitors alike, improve public health,
and make our County an even more desirable location to live, work,
and do business.

On May 19, 2015, the Ulster County Legislature

will vote on authorizing the MOA with the City of
New York, which will allow the County to begin a
public planning process to design and conduct
needed environmental reviews for the future trail
with the goal of beginning construction in late 2016
or 2017. This MOA agreement is vigorously
opposed by the current private railroad tenant on
the rail corridor despite the fact that it has not used
this section of track for any revenue trains during
its entire 25-year lease, which ends in May 2016.

Why Now?
Its essential that your voice be heard now by the Ulster
County Legislature so the MOA is signed and this historic
trail project can move forward without further delays!
Calling or emailing members of the Legislature is important,
and contact information can be found at:

$3.5 Million in new grant funding is in

jeopardy without a signed MOA.

$2 Million in 2013 State trail funding for

trail needs to be used or is at risk.

$330,000 in 2014 Water Quality grants

could expire from delays.

Without the MOA, additional private

funding and/or commitments for trail
maintenance cannot be secured.

NYCDEP is currently planning bridge

improvements, and the MOA will
guarantee improved pedestrian and
bicycle accommodations and community

Delay in approving MOA undermines

ability to negotiate future agreements.

Planning needs to begin this summer if

the trail is to advance after the May 31,
2016 expiration of the railroad lease.

Please also attend the Legislative session on May 19 to show

your support for the Ashokan Trail. For more information,
please visit the Friends of the Catskill MOAntain Rail Trail:

Support the MOA for the Ashokan Trail

Pass Resolution No. 187.