The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has earmarked $1.1 million in grants to be used to increase storm resiliency and for recreation projects along the Hudson River, including $750,000 for projects along the Sleepy Hollow and Tarrytown waterfronts.
The grants are part of three programs that seek to increase accessibility to the river for boating, fishing, swimming and “wildlife-dependent recreation,” the state Department of Environmental Conservation said. Funding for these grants is provided by the Natural Resource Damages General Motors/Tarrytown Assembly Plant Hudson River Settlement and is administered by the DEC’s Hudson River Estuary Program.
DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said the Hudson River is an exceptional resource that should be accessible for all New Yorkers to enjoy.
“The project will enhance work already underway to expand recreational opportunities throughout the estuary,” said Seggos. “This funding supports Governor Cuomo’s important investments to create new and expanded recreation opportunities for people of all abilities and provide increased access to New York’s natural resources.”
Both villages have ongoing developments at former industrial properties on the waterfront, including the former General Motors assembly plant in Sleepy Hollow. The larger portion of the former GM property is being developed as Edge-on-Hudson, which will include over 1,000 condominiums and rental apartments, shops, eateries and more.
The smaller, 29-acre part of the property is being developed by the village – with oversight by the village-created Sleepy Hollow Local Development Corporation – to include recreation and entertainment facilities.
The projects being funded include:
Historic Hudson Valley: $104,000
Historic Hudson Valley will improve storm resiliency and river access for the public at Philipsburg Manor, a historic landmark in Sleepy Hollow contiguous to the former GM site. The project will eradicate invasive species on the shoreline to improve access and preserve the view shed, stabilize the shoreline, upgrade the picnic area to meet universal access standards, and remove fallen trees from the river to facilitate recreational kayaking.
Village of Sleepy Hollow: $375,000
The village of Sleepy Hollow will restore and enhance the riverside trail on the former GM site, which stretches from Devries Park to Philipsburg Manor along the southern shoreline of the Pocantico River, a tributary of the Hudson. The funding will also be used to stabilize the shoreline, remove invasive species, and construct a connected path network with a viewing platform and educational signage. The completed trail will connect Devries Park to inner village neighborhoods and to the Sleepy Hollow Commons project and its amenities.
Village of Tarrytown: $271,000
The village of Tarrytown will stabilize the Hudson River shoreline of Losee Park to reduce erosion and the impact of flooding. The project will improve public access to the existing kayak/canoe launch at the park. The village will also work with local public schools, the senior center, and underserved residents to promote the enjoyment of nature and recreational opportunities.
The remaining grants are available to communities throughout the Hudson River estuary. Those include $200,000 in grants under the state Environmental Protection Fund, with up to $50,000 for each individual grant.
The state is also making $165,000 available for river education programs.
The deadline for all grant applications is Aug. 22.