Advisers to greenway panel urged to
By ANTHONY CARDINALE
News Staff Reporter
An advisory group to the newly created Niagara
River Greenway Commission was urged Wednesday evening to push for
elimination of the Robert Moses Parkway between Niagara Falls and
The 6.5-mile stretch of highway along the
river came under fire from representatives of two organizations attending
the second public meeting of the Citizens Advisory Committee at the
Buffalo & Erie County Historical Society.
Joan E. Johnson of the Niagara Heritage
Partnership said its repeated attempts to address the issue with the New
York Power Authority were rebuffed by what she called "evasive negotiation
The Greenway Commission was created by Gov.
George E. Pataki to oversee the creation of a continuous recreational area
from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario. The commission is to receive up to $10
million a year from the Power Authority as part of the relicensing of the
Niagara Power Project.
After the commission was created, Johnson
said, the Power Authority's negotiators "immediately shifted their stance"
and "we were then told the proper venue for voicing our concerns would be
the Greenway Commission."
She asked that at least one gorge greenway
plan without parkway lanes be drawn up by its consultant, Wendel
Johnson's Niagara Heritage Partnership - a
group of concerned citizens seeking to preserve the natural environment -
also submitted these proposals:
of an ecology center at De Veaux Woods State Park, to include
entertainment as well as educational programs. It also would house
projects of a proposed Joint International Biological Commission.
of a greenhouse where the four-lane Robert Moses Parkway now passes the
Niagara Power Project. It would grow native flora to be transplanted for
Restoration of Devil's Hole State Park by repairing damage caused by the
Power Authority's road construction.
Michelle Vanstrom of the Niagara Frontier
Wildlife Habitat Council also called for demolition of the parkway north
of the Falls.
"Eliminating the Robert Moses Parkway
entirely would help revitalize Niagara Falls' Main Street as well as other
business districts through the redirection of traffic" onto city streets,
"At each greenway meeting," Vanstrom added,
"citizen advocates ask for consideration, suggest information and provide
supporting environmental data. Yet some commissioners maintain an ongoing
refusal to be educated about environmental issues."
Margaret Wooster of Buffalo Niagara
Riverkeeper and Mark Mistretta of Wendel Duchscherer discussed preliminary
matters relating to how boundaries will be determined for the Niagara
Advisory Committee Chairman Paul Dyster
said its next meeting will be in Niagara County but no date has been set.