Plans unveiled for Lake George environmental park
LAKE GEORGE Detailed plans have been unveiled for the Charles R. Wood Lake George Environmental Park at the former Gaslight Village site at the southern end of Lake George.
The nearly $6 million project will create a 12-acre park in the village, with the potential to create more than 100 construction jobs, state officials said Tuesday.
The village and Warren County will construct the park on the site of the former Gaslight Village Amusement Park in the heart of the village, where a large drainage and wetland restoration project is already underway.
The West Brook Conservation Initiative is replicating the wetlands that protected West Brook and Lake George’s southern tip from storm runoff before they were filled in when a railroad was constructed in the 1880s.
The total cost of the wetland filtration system and park is expected to be about $15 million.
The park will include interactive exhibits that teach about the way water shapes people’s everyday lives, and the park will include festival space, nature trails, fitness walks, an interactive water fountain, playground area and a skateboard park. There will be new sidewalks connecting the park to Beach Road and the Warren County bike path.
The park will be named for Wood, founder of The Great Escape amusement park and Gaslight Village, who went on to become a regional philanthropist. He died in 2004, but a foundation he established is also contributing $750,000 to the park project.
The village, Warren County, the Lake George Association, the FUND for Lake George and the Lake George Land Conservancy have also contributed toward funding the wetlands restoration project and the park to be built around it.
“The project connects the unique cultural and historic landmarks of Warren County while stimulating economic vitality, protecting the environment and expanding tourism,” said Capital Region Economic Development Council co-chairs James Barba and Robert Jones, who announced details of the park plan Tuesday.
Gaslight Village was founded by Wood in the 1950s, but had been closed since 1989.
The park was awarded a $381,000 Environmental Protection Fund Local Waterfront Revitalization Program grant through the Capital Region Economic Development Council in 2011, and it received another $750,000 waterfront revitalization grant as part of the second round of council funding in 2012.
In addition, the New York State Environmental Facilities Corp. has awarded the project $400,000 for “stabilized turf” within the park, which is designed to sustain heavy equipment and vehicle use.