Yorktown Trail Plan (group)

A cooperative project of the New York- New Jersey Trail Conference's East Hudson Community Initiative (Trail Conference) with cooperation of and involvement with Westchester Mountain Biking Association (WMBA)

Purpose:

Design and build a non-motorized trail system encompassingand connecting Sylvan Glen, Deer Hollow Park, the new Stony Street park property, the DEP property, the gas line, Woodlands Park, and the YorktownTrailway.

Summary:

Overall the trail system is envisioned to encourage positive uses of the park. Community involvement in the building phase will help that vision.

The trails will be built to be sustainable with natural resource issues addressed in their design and construction.  It is assumed they will have minimal impact to the environment, minimize changes to its shape (in terms of surface, width, and location), resist erosion, and minimize the need for maintenance.  An environmental assessment will address issues of rare or endangered species. Invasive species such as barberry or multiflora rose will be noted. Once completed, the trails will be maintained according to the Trail Conference's management and maintenance practices.

Groups expected to use the trails include hikers, mountain bikers, trail runners, dog walkers, birders, cross country skiers, snowshoers, and those who seek solitude, and generally enjoy nature. Trails will be marked for foot traffic or multiuse. No motorized vehicles will be permitted on any of the trails.   

Access to trails will be through parking areas, neighborhood rights of way, and ends of streets.

Trails will be blazed using the Town's tag blazes. Signs indicating permitted uses will be posted at all entrances with kiosks at parking areas. All kiosks will have a map and interpretive material with additional interpretive signs at appropriate places.

Phase I - Before construction begins

  • Secure permission from:
    • New York- New Jersey Trail Conference - Granted April, 2010
    • Town of Yorktown
      • Parks and Recreation Commission - Granted March, 2010
      • Town Board - MOU signed June 22, 2010
    • New York City Department of Environmental Protection (once Town Board approves)
    • Phoenix Academy (if incorporating any trails that are on their property)
  • Recruit and engage a management team - Established April, 2010
    • Establish website and e-mail address - Done
  • Sign contract and close on Granite Knolls property - Town
  • Approve Trail Plan - Parks and Recreation Commission - no need for formal approval
  • Approve Trail Layout Plan - Parks and Recreation Commission and Trail Conference

Phase II - Planning

Assess property

  • Look at aerial photos and GIS layers
  • Prowl the properties
    • Find additional interesting features and noting locations with GPS - Done
    • Locate feasible neighborhood entrances - being worked on (Bruce)
  • Prepare a layout plan with proposed trails
    • Include most of the desirable features
    • Close and rehabilitate redundant or unsuitable existing trails
  • Check that proposed trails are within the property
  • Recommend use (foot only, ADA,  multiuse)

Design trails considering

  • Purpose of trail (user groups)
  • Natural and cultural opportunities
  • Construction costs and maintainability

Determine budget, determine funding stream

  • Bridges - IMBA, possible Greenway grant
  • Environmental assessments - donations
  • Barn removal and parking - apply for Recreational Trails Grant
  • Signs and kiosks - likely to be youth projects, matching fund grant for youth projects available through the Trail Conference
  • ADA accessible trails - seek grant funding

Arrange for and have done an environmental assessment for new trails

Communicate with Yorktown residents about proposed trail system

  • Neighbors
  • Schools

Obtain trail approvals - Trail Conference's Trails Council 

  • August 5, 2010 meeting
    • Agreement to maintain existing trails at Sylvan Glen and Yorktown Trailway
    • Approve trail plan for additional trails in Sylvan Glen and Woodlands

Phase III - Build trails following the Trail Conference's and IMBA's guidelines

  • Engage community
    • Contact neighbors, community organizations, youth groups, etc.
    • Write announcements and newspaper articles
  • Recruit and train volunteers to build non-motorized trails
  • Hold opening ceremony

Phase IV - Maintain trails following the Trail Conference's Trails Policy and management practices

Assign maintainers when completed of:

  • Yorktown Trailway and existing trails in Sylvan Glen
  • Woodlands
  • Granite Knolls property (pending acquistion)
  • New trails in Sylvan Glen
  • Access trail from Deer Hollow Park

Appendix - Map

Lines

  • Yellow GPS tracks - Existing trails in Sylvan Glen Preserve and the Yorktown Trailway
  • Purple - Recent scouting trips which may or may not be the final route
  • Red - gas line
  • Narrow red - older GPS tracks, likely ATV tracks.

Shaded areas

  • Light green - Town owned or about to be
  • Dark green - Town parkland

Locations 

  • FDR Park is in lower right corner
  • Taconic State Parkway is almost in the middle of the map
  • The pedestrian bridge over the parkway is just north of the gas line
  • Land along the parkway is owned by the parkway