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For Release: Friday, April 22, 2016

DEC Opens Accessible Fishing and Boat Access on the Lower Esopus Creek in Town of Ulster

Site Provides Fishing Access in an Urban Area Close to the Thruway and the City of Kingston

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation celebrated Earth Day 2016 with the grand opening of a new fishing access and car-top boat launch on the Lower Esopus Creek off Sandy Road in the Town of Ulster Friday.

This is DEC's first fishing access on the Lower Esopus Creek and covers 200 feet of creek frontage. It was designed to withstand large fluctuations in water level and be as accessible as possible given the steep grade.

"This strategically located access, close to the Thruway and the City of Kingston, gives residents and visitors an attractive place to fish for popular warm water fish such as bass, walleye, perch, and sunfish, or to launch a canoe or kayak and explore the Esopus," said DEC Region 3 Director Martin Brand. "The enhancements at this site will also provide children who live in the city a new, safe place to experience the outdoors and open their eyes to nature which is a priority of DEC."

Site enhancements include:

  • A fishing platform with floating docks running parallel to the shore
  • Concrete paths from the parking lot to the fishing area
  • A boat launch for canoes and kayaks
  • Three universally accessible picnic tables
  • A 12-car parking area with two accessible parking spaces

"Our city will directly benefit from this new fishing and boating access in our neighboring community," said Kingston Mayor Steve Noble. "As an avid kayaker, I am excited to welcome this spectacular new resource to our region."

Ownership of the location was recently transferred from Ulster County to the DEC.

"We are very pleased that Ulster County and the DEC combined to make this happen," said Ulster County Executive Mike Hein. "The County acquired this property through a flood buyout program and in return accomplished two very important goals: most importantly, we helped a family move out of harm's way; and we have also greatly improved public access to this waterway. That has been at the forefront of our efforts with the New York City DEP while we have successfully fought to clean-up the Lower Esopus. I want to thank DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos for DEC's efforts to construct a beautiful, and much-needed public space along the Lower Esopus."

"I commend DEC's Bill Rudge for pitching the plan to make this area open to the public for fishing, boating and kayaking, said Joe Liuni, Federated Sportsmens Clubs of Ulster County President. "It's a beautiful location, and due to the work of the DEC more people will have access to this incredible spot."

The access was designed and constructed to minimize any negative impacts to the Esopus Creek. All drainage from the walkways and parking spots flows away from the creek and is filtered through the sandy soils beneath the site. The sheet piling at the creek edge is faced with white oak so no pressure treated wood was used.

The site design reflects its urban location and will require minimal maintenance. Colored, stamped concrete was used for the walkways. Forty trees were planted on both sides of Sandy Road: white spruce to screen the parking areas from the neighboring residences and maples for shade.

The entire project was built by DEC Operations staff for $300,000 using New York Works 3 funding. The site is one of Governor Andrew Cuomo's 50 priority access sites under the NY Open for Hunting and Fishing Initiative.

The announcement is in honor of Earth Week, April 17-23, which Governor Cuomo proclaimed as a weeklong celebration of New York's commitment and accomplishments to protecting our environment, conserving open space, increasing access to the state's vast and magnificent natural resources, implementing clean energy initiatives and preparing for the effects of climate change.

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    21 South Putt Corners Rd.
    New Paltz, NY 12561
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