The New York State Department of State and Chautauqua County today announced the completion of a Local Waterfront Revitalization Program (LWRP) project to install ADA accessible kayak launches at five locations throughout the county. This $97,540 Project was funded in part by a $73,155 Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) LWRP grant awarded to Chautauqua County to enhance public access to recreational activities along Lake Erie and Chautauqua Lake. The remaining match was provided by the municipalities, Lake Erie Management Commission (LECM), and the Chautauqua Watershed Conservancy.
The project included the installation of kayak launches at Cattaraugus Creek Boat Launch in Hanover, the Walnut Creek boat launch in Silver Creek, Dunkirk Harbor in the City of Dunkirk, Barcelona Harbor in Westfield, and near the Route 394 Bridge in Busti/North Harmony.
NYS Secretary of State Rossana Rosado said, “As the summer approaches in this post COVID-19 world, communities are ready to offer opportunities for summer enjoyment and economic revitalization. I’m delighted that the Local Waterfront Revitalization Program will provide great recreational and touristic possibilities to residents and visitors of Chautauqua County. This project will provide economic support for local businesses while offering beautiful waterfront views and exciting activities for people to enjoy.”
Chautauqua County Executive PJ Wendell said, “I know this has been an arduous project for the Planning Department and others, and I would like to sincerely thank them for all of their hard work. I would also like to extend my gratitude to our municipal partners for collaborating with the County in order to bring this project to fruition. Projects like this will encourage more people to not only visit our beautiful county, but make it their home.”
Chautauqua Deputy County Executive for Economic Development Mark Geise said, “I really must commend Rebecca Wurster and Matt Bourke from the County’s Department of Planning & Development, Ed Schintzius from the Hanover Town Board (who was a catalyst in getting this project on our radar), Anchor Marine (who installed the launches), the New York State Department of State, and others who were instrumental in making this project a reality. This is a great project for our county as it will encourage more residents and visitors to take advantage of our water resources, and in the process spend more money locally. It is also in line with one of the primary long-term goals articulated in the County’s Comprehensive Plan, which is to establish Chautauqua County as a mecca for outdoor recreation and active living.”
Chautauqua County’s natural resources and abundance of waterbodies are regarded as key local assets for our communities, and a focal point for recreation and leisure for our residents and visitors. Chautauqua County is known regionally and beyond for its 48 miles of waterfront along Lake Erie, its 42 miles of waterfront along Chautauqua Lake, and abundant water resources at Findley, Cassadaga, and Bear Lakes. These waterbodies and their tributaries are visited frequently by residents and tourists, who deploy boats, kayaks, and other watercraft to enjoy fishing, swimming, and other forms of water recreation.
The Department of State’s LWRP, funded under Title 11 of the EPF, provides matching grants on a competitive basis to eligible villages, towns, cities, and counties located along New York’s coasts and designated inland waterways for planning, design, and construction projects to revitalize communities and waterfronts. The program helps communities breathe new life into their underused waterfront assets in ways that ensure successful and sustainable revitalization. To learn more about the Local Waterfront Revitalization Program, visit here.