Give Now NCPR is made possible by
Your Donations
 

NCPR News Staff: Brian Mann
News Reporter and Adirondack Bureau Chief

Show             

Adirondack train route to rail-trail conversation

There was dramatic news yesterday afternoon from Albany. State officials announced that they will formally reopen the unit management plan for the historic rail corridor that stretches through the Adirondacks from Old Forge to Lake Placid.

But the Cuomo administration also took a surprise step, proposing a concept that would effectively divide the corridor in half. The section from Old Forge to Tupper Lake would be maintained as a tourism railroad, with new investment from New York state.

The section from Tupper Lake to Lake Placid, however, would be converted into a multi-use rail-trail for hikers, skiers and snowmobile riders. Martha Foley and Brian Mann talked about the plan Thursday morning on the 8 O'clock Hour.  Go to full article
If the concept unveiled today by state officials is adopted, trains would no longer run to Saranac Lake's station (seen here) or to Lake Placid.  Train service might eventually be offered as far north as Tupper Lake.  Photo:  Susan Waters
If the concept unveiled today by state officials is adopted, trains would no longer run to Saranac Lake's station (seen here) or to Lake Placid. Train service might eventually be offered as far north as Tupper Lake. Photo: Susan Waters

State may convert section of Adirondack train route to rail-trail

State officials say they plan to reopen the planning process for the historic railroad track from Old Forge to Lake Placid.

In a statement released Wednesday afternoon, state Transportation and Environment commissioners also said they would consider converting a large segment of the historic train route to a "rail-to-trail" system.

If the proposal goes forward, tracks along the stretch from Tupper Lake to Lake Placid, via Saranac Lake, would be removed and replaced with a trail surface.

"In response to public interest, we are reopening the Unit Management Plan, providing new opportunities to engage local communities and support the regional economy as we plan for the corridor's future," said DOT Commissioner Joan McDonald in a statement.  Go to full article

Hudson rafting company troubles

The Glens Falls Post Star is reporting this morning that the brakes may have failed on a tubing company tour bus over the weekend, leading to the death of a 15-year-old boy.

According to the newspaper, the man driving the bus told authorities that the brakes failed as he tried to slow on a turn.  Go to full article
Andre LaFlamme, a paramedic in Lac-Megantic, remembers July 6 2013 as "hell."  He stands on a ceremonial boardwalk outside the destroyed area known as the "red zone."  Photo:  Monique Cornett
Andre LaFlamme, a paramedic in Lac-Megantic, remembers July 6 2013 as "hell." He stands on a ceremonial boardwalk outside the destroyed area known as the "red zone." Photo: Monique Cornett

One year later: sorrow, hope and hard work in Lac-Megantic

Early Sunday morning in a small town in eastern Quebec, thousands of local residents held a midnight vigil for the victims of one of North America's deadliest train accidents.

One year ago, an American-owned tanker train carrying crude oil from North Dakota derailed and erupted in Lac-Megantic. The flames incinerated the community's downtown. Forty-seven people died.  Go to full article
The bus owned by the Tubby Tubes Rafting company was carrying 31 customers and 3 employees.

Tourism bus crashes in Adirondacks, killing 15-year-old

State police say a bus accident Saturday afternoon in Lake Luzerne has left one 15-year-old dead and injured another. The accident took place just after midday.

The bus owned by the Tubby Tubes Rafting company was carrying 31 customers and 3 employees. They were traveling to make an excursion on the Hudson River.

According to police, the bus overturned, apparently because of mechanical problems.

"A fifteen year old river guide employed by Tubby Tubes was ejected from the bus and died at the scene," according to the State Police statement.

A customer who suffered an ankle injury was transported to Glens Falls Hospital. An investigation of the one-vehicle accident is underway.  Go to full article
A painting in Lac-Megantic's St. Agnes Church by Louise Latulipe commemorates the oil train fire storm and the 47 people lost in the disaster.  Photo:  Brian Mann
A painting in Lac-Megantic's St. Agnes Church by Louise Latulipe commemorates the oil train fire storm and the 47 people lost in the disaster. Photo: Brian Mann

Quebec town struggles one year after oil train fire storm

This weekend the small town of Lac-Megantic, Quebec is preparing to mark the one year anniversary since that deadly train derailment, when a U.S. tanker train exploded killing 47 people.

Brian Mann has been covering this story since last July when the disaster first occurred and he's back in Quebec today. He spoke with Martha Foley.  Go to full article
Today's decision appears to clear the way for development of the massive Adirondack Club and Resort project in Tupper Lake.  Pictured are developer Tom Lawson, and lead developer Michael Foxman Photo: Mark Kurtz
Today's decision appears to clear the way for development of the massive Adirondack Club and Resort project in Tupper Lake. Pictured are developer Tom Lawson, and lead developer Michael Foxman Photo: Mark Kurtz

Cuomo weighs in on Adirondack Club and Resort decision

In a sweeping decision made public yesterday, the appellate division of New York's Supreme Court dismissed an environmental group's lawsuit that aimed to block the Adirondack Club and Resort project in Tupper Lake.

The ruling appears to give the green light to a project that has been on the drawing board for more than a decade.

Governor Andrew Cuomo issued a statement praising the court's decision and the process that led to the permitting of the resort.

"This ruling confirms the Agency's approval was based on substantial evidence developed carefully and in strict accordance with mandated State statues and environmental regulations," Cuomo said.

"The Adirondack Club and Resort Project will bring significant economy activity, jobs, and new opportunities to Tupper Lake and the Adirondack Park."  Go to full article
A crowd gathered in the Lewis town fire hall on Wednesday to hear details of NYCO's proposed expansion at two mines that would mean additional truck traffic and hours of operation.  Photo:  Brian Mann
A crowd gathered in the Lewis town fire hall on Wednesday to hear details of NYCO's proposed expansion at two mines that would mean additional truck traffic and hours of operation. Photo: Brian Mann

NYCO mining expansion in Adirondacks raises new questions

Last November NYCO Minerals won a statewide ballot initiative that is expected to allow them to explore for a mineral called Wollastonite on 200 acres of the Adirondack forest preserve in the Jay Mountain Wilderness.

That controversial project, involving a chunk of land known as "Lot 8" is still on-hold, awaiting permits from New York state.

But the company is also moving forward with plans to expand two existing Wollasonite mines in the Essex County town of Lewis. Company officials say the project is needed to maintain NYCO's operations.

Green groups have raised questions about the plan's environmental impacts.

But this time, local residents and some local government officials say they too have questions about the impact on public safety and on quality of life  Go to full article
At North Creek Station. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/altuwa/8117850154/">Sébastien Barré</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
At North Creek Station. Photo: Sébastien Barré, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Adirondack tourism trains cut schedules

The Glens Falls Post Star is reporting that the tourism training serving the Gore Mountain area around North Creek will reduce its operations this summer.

The Saratoga and North Creek Railway has operated 7 days a week in past years. This summer, it will make runs four days a week, Friday through Monday.

A spokesman told the railroad that the runs were cut back after they analyzed mid-week ridership.  Go to full article
Neighbors tried to save the children but were turned back by "intense heat and smoke."

Two children dead in Clinton County fire

State officials say two children died Monday night in a fire in the Clinton County community of Harkness near Keeseville.

A 911 call was made Monday night at 9:30. State police, along with fire and EMS crews from Keeseville, Peru and other nearby communities responded and found the home on Clintonville Road "engulfed in fire."

When the fire was out, seven year-old Tucker Burnham, and four year-old Payden Burnham were found dead in the wreckage.  Go to full article

« first   « previous 10   21-30 of 2930 stories   next 10 »   last »


Brian Mann. Nancie Battaglia photo

Brian Mann
grew up in Alaska, where he fell in love with public radio. In 1999, Brian moved to the Adirondacks and helped launch NCPR's news bureau at Paul Smiths College. "I love the chemistry of water and mountains," Brian says. "But I'm also pretty crazy about village life in the north country. It's the kind of place where you know your neighbors." Brian lives in Saranac Lake with wife Susan and son Nicholas. He's a frequent contributor to NPR and also writes regularly for regional magazines, including Adirondack Life and the Adirondack Explorer.

Recent Brian Mann stories carried by NPR:

July 24, 2014 | NCPR · Small-town startups often struggle to attract serious investors. But efforts are under way to help entrepreneurs outside the urban beltway find financing.
 
AP
December 16, 2013 | NPR · Forty seven people died in July when a freight train derailed and dozens of tanks carrying oil exploded and caught fire. Much of Lac-Megantic was leveled. For the first time since then, freight cars will travel through this week. Officials say they'll only carry "dry goods." Residents are worried.
 
NCPR
August 28, 2013 | NPR · For the last four decades the Rockefeller Drug Laws have been impacting many in upstate New York. North Country Public Radio undertook an ambitious reporting project to tell this national story throughout this year, which marks the 40th anniversary of the Rockefeller Laws.
 
July 26, 2013 | NPR · More than two weeks after a fiery train crash left 47 dead in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, the town's center remains in shambles, while a criminal investigation and lawsuits are underway.
 
Getty Images
February 14, 2013 | NCPR · Forty years ago, New York enacted tough laws in response to a wave of drug-related crime. They became known as the Rockefeller drug laws, and they set the standard for states looking to get tough on crime. But a new debate is under way over the effectiveness of such strict sentencing laws.
 
Courtesy of Yvonne Prendes
February 14, 2013 | NCPR · George Prendes was 23 when he was sentenced under New York's Rockefeller drug laws — tough mandatory sentencing guidelines for nonviolent drug crimes. The 15 years Prendes served for a drug transaction still reverberate for him and his family.
 
November 4, 2012 | NPR · As New York City's first responders begin to show fatigue, and in many cases deal with losses of their own homes, replacement crews of firefighters are getting ready to roll into Manhattan and Long Island. Among them are a group of firefighters from a small rural fire station in the mountains of upstate New York.
 
August 29, 2012 | NCPR · New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is expected to decide soon whether to allow natural gas companies to use the controversial drilling technique known as hydro-fracking. New Yorkers are sharply divided on the issue. Industry groups and activists are campaigning hard to shape how the decision will be received.
 
May 28, 2012 | NCPR · Farm worker advocates and top Obama administration officials have been pushing hard for new regulations that would improve safety for teenagers working on farms. But facing fierce opposition from the agriculture industry and its allies in Congress, the Department of Labor abruptly withdrew a set of rules that advocates said could save dozens of lives every year.
 
istockphoto.com
April 30, 2012 | NPR · The Obama administration backed off a proposal to restrict kids under 16 from working on farms after a major push by conservatives and farm state Democrats. But farmers themselves weren't too happy about the restrictions, either.