Blooming Grove GIS Maps, Natural Resources Inventory & Conservation Advisory Committee Will Aid Town To Prepare for Future
By Edie Johnson
A presentation by Johanna Kiernan (former Deputy Supervisor and member of several of the town’s conservation committees), and Matt Decker of the Orange County Land Trust, shared the results of about nearly a year of work collecting information about the town’s natural resources and working with Orange County Planning to produce data and maps showing rich land assets that planning and zoning departments may decide to protect with special zoning, others that may be suitable for development, and still others that may be suitable for purchase by participating sponsors of agencies such as the Land Trust and Open Space Institute. Parts of the study were completed through a DEC Estuary Grant that shared with Cornwall since a significant portion of the land on and beneath the Schunnemunk Ridge continues through both towns The summaries of data collected in these studies will be useful in further developing Blooming Grove’s Comprehensive Plan.
The maps they showed residents included 2 of 12 GIS maps that go into great detail on waterways, scenic views, forestry and areas of good soils to name a few. Data has in the past contributed to programs such as Spring Cleanups and the Trees for Tribs Program which helps water absorption along streams, rivers and creeks.
Recreation Space in High Demand
As warm weather arrives, the thoughts of many go to recreation opportunities in the town. It seems there is never enough space for all of the Football, Little League, Soccer, Softball and Lacrosse activities that residents look forward to. Supervisor Rob Jeroloman pointed out that there is 100 acres available at Lasser Field, only a relatively small portion of which has been engineered for use. He suggested to try what some other communities have done; that is to design at least a portion of the remaining Lasser land in concentric, or fields within fields, for interdisciplinary sports use to make the most of space available.
Both football and lacrosse have urgent needs for field repair and development. Highway Superintendant, Wayne Kirkpatrick has offered to help when possible; however, he said he expects that it will be awhile before fields are dry enough to work on and will require some rough grading before seeding is even possible for future use for lacrosse.
Football fields need some maintenance as well, and they are asking the Town to share in half of the cost of a likely total of about $7,000. Kirkpatrick agreed to help cut costs by using town dump trucks for delivery. The estimate may be high as well because town purchases will exclude tax. The town will require at least 3 bids on supplies and will then determine whether current finances can cover their half, considering other projects in the works.
For those looking for swimming as their recreation, the Hill-Mar Lodge will be reserved for an amount not to exceed $7,350 and will include the dates of July (10, 12, 17, 19, 24, 26 and 31 as well as August 2, 7, 9, 14, 16, 21 and 23.)
NOTE: Last week’s story about a balloon test for visual impacts of community solar projects entering the pipeline mistakenly said there were 4 projects currently undergoing review. There are actually 3 projects being reviewed (project listed on Round Hill Road and Route 208 which is having a Balloon Test on Saturday, February 24, is Cypress Creek. Referral to Rena Marie Circle is the same project, and is just a clarification of the site being in proximity to Rena Marie).