Sunday, April 8, 2018

How to Observe Earth Day 2018

Members of Germantown's waterfront advisory committee are organizing a riverfront rally to take place on Earth Day, Sunday, April 22, from noon to 2 p.m., at Ernest R. Lasher Memorial Park in Germantown. The rally is part of the response to Amtrak's proposal to install gates and fencing at various points along the shoreline which threatens to restrict access to the Hudson River.

The press release announcing the rally reads in part:
[The] proposal for the waterfront owned by CSX . . . does not appear to attempt closing existing vehicular crossings. But it does appear to restrict access to all sections of the riverside access road north and south of the town's existing crossings at Lasher Park (formerly known as the Anchorage) and Cheviot Park. . . . Those stretches have for many years been active with fishing enthusiasts, bird-watchers, dog-walkers, joggers and walkers. Also a 700-foot fence parallel to the tracks and along the terminus of Germantown's Lower Main Street would seek to block river access at an unofficial crossing to an area of shore that has been busy with recreational activity dating back at least 105 years. . . .
The Germantown waterfront advisory committee believes the waterfront is a vital link to the town's colonial past and a gateway to its future. It defines our identity as a Hudson River community: a desirable place to live, work, and visit. Amtrak has indicated the purpose of the proposal is to increase safety. Our committee also believes that if it's not broken, it doesn't need to be fixed—based on interviews with local law enforcement and first responders, there have been zero injuries and zero fatalities in recent memory that could have been prevented by the proposed access restrictions in Germantown. 
Fencing and gates are also proposed for sites along the river in Stuyvesant, Stockport, Tivoli, Rhinebeck, and Rhinecliff. Locked gates already prohibit access to Castleton-on-Hudson's public riverfront park.

The public comment period, which began on March 14 and was originally meant to continue for just two weeks, has been extended until 4:30 p.m. on May 1. Last week, Assemblymember Didi Barrett joined Riverkeeper, Scenic Hudson, and the supervisors of Germantown, Livingson, Clermont, Stockport, and Stuyvesant in calling on Amtrak and the Department of State to hold public forums in each of the communities impacted by the proposal. A website has been created to share information about the proposal, submitting comments, and the rally on Earth Day.

Anyone interested volunteering or coordinating for the Lasher Park rally is asked to contact Martin Overington at The Village of Castleton-on-Hudson is coordinating with the Germantown waterfront advisory committee to hold a rally at the locked gates to their park on the same day. Other riverfront communities--whether affected or not affected by the proposal--are encouraged to hold parallel Earth Day rallies.


  1. Re Amtrak Rally: Earth Day (April 22) is on a Sunday (not a saturday)

  2. The margins of the little wetlands you see in the upper right quadrant of the photo trace the pre-1851 shore of the Hudson River. Other small embayments along that same stretch are now completely filled in, but the original deeds can be scrutinized to see if the owners retained their navigational and crossing rights.

    That's a lot of work, though, when people want to be believe in rallies and feelings.

    To help cure the illness of always losing, protesters should pay a visit to Hudson's Promenade cliff to appreciate how little the State of New York and Amtrak are concerned about the protests of a community with no waterfront program.

  3. Like sheep wandering aimless, the eastern shore of the Faithful is being developed by the feckless.

    In the year of my birth, the Fed's started charging 3 cents per gallon for roads, that paved the pathway for upstate industry to move south.

    Now navigators on the eastern shore pay 63 cents per gallon to "promote" better roads, bridges and increased access for motor boats, and receive none of these.

    The whole idea of the people's shore was; because there was no king, it had to given to not for profit navigators.

    Instead of new bridges for Hudson, our money is sent south, to create a monument to King Cuomo the 1st in Tarrytown. Instead of promoting "free and easy" access we get fences.

    We on the eastern shore are like sheep wandering aimless...without guidance.