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Restore the natural beauty of the falls

Everybody's Column, Buffalo News, 8 March 1998


Recently, the Niagara Heritage Partnership put forth a proposal to remove several miles of the Robert Moses Parkway between the Schoellkopf Museum and Lewiston and to restore the natural landscape of the gorge top.


I am writing in support of this plan, which is the best idea I have yet heard for the future of the Niagara Falls area.


Having spent a lifetime in Western New York boating the river, hiking the gorge and visiting the falls, I have witnessed both the wonderful natural power of this area and the tragedy of its poorly planned development.


Over the past century, we have allowed one of the world’s most awe-inspiring places to be defaced by miles of pavement and gaudy commercialism.

The partnership’s plan focuses on the true gem of this region--the natural beauty of the Niagara River and its gorge.


Restoration, including removal of the parkway and replanting of native trees and shrubs, would provide critical habitat for wildlife.

Human visitors would find an unparalleled experience: seeing the gorge top as it existed before the destruction of its native plants and wildlife.


This plan offers an opportunity to embrace a new era in the history of Niagara and to correct some of the errors in judgment that led to the overdevelopment of the area.


To those of us who truly appreciate the natural and historical value of the gorge, and its significance to Western New York, this is a plan whose time has come.


Robbyn Drake, Amherst


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Niagara Heritage Partnership

MPO Box 1495

Niagara Falls, New York 14302-1723