It was a State Arbor Day celebration in April 2015, when Governor Andrew Cuomo proclaimed that New York is serious about conserving open space and protecting natural resources, like our very own Tivoli Lake Preserve. The NYSDEC has followed through with that commitment by awarding Albany $500,000 from the Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) for property improvements at Tivoli—which comes at a perfect time now that a Visioning Plan and conceptual design for the Preserve has been completed.
“Thank you to the DEC and to Governor Cuomo as well for funds that will help us clear invasive species, build trails, and make the park more inviting to everyone looking for a woodland oasis in our City,” stated Mayor Kathy Sheehan, in response to the EPF award.
Implementing the Tivoli Lake Preserve Visioning Plan cannot happen all at once though. The City’s Department of Planning and Development is phasing the workload by prioritizing projects, making sustainable decisions, coordinating efforts, and allocating EPF funds for construction costs, accordingly. Listed below are the top proposed projects that are currently being managed and are underway.
- Invasive Plant Species Management: Inventorying and mapping concentrations of existing invasive plants is essential for planning their removal. Phragmites, a tall aggressive wetland grass, is found throughout the Preserve and takes up over half of Tivoli Lake. It is a species prioritized for removal.
- Targeted Grazing: Not only is sheep grazing an ecologically-friendly way to control and remove invasive plants, this method also improves the nutrients in the soil, and generates new and healthy habitat to grow and sustain populations of desirable plants and animals.
- Entryway Design at Livingston & Judson: A new layout has been designed for the poplar entrance at the junction of Livingston Avenue and Judson Street. The design includes a resurfaced lot with decorative landscaping, pathways and signage.
- Trail Planning: In an effort to make the Preserve more accessible, a new ADA compliant trail is currently being assessed. The trail will connect to the entrances at Livingston and Judson and at North Manning Boulevard.
Today, the work begins, but never ends. Through generous contributions from the State, the City and the community, Tivoli is on its way to becoming a revived destination.