CITY RIVERFRONT MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
Meeting held Tuesday, October 10, 2017
The meeting of the Riverfront Management Council of the City of Jamestown, New York, was held on Tuesday, October 10, 2017, at 5:30 p.m.
Those present representing the Council were:
Julia Ciesla-Hanley, Recreation Coordinator
The meeting was called to order by Billy Stevenson.
Approval of Minutes of Previous Meeting
A motion was made by John Bauer and seconded by Jade Barber to approve the minutes of the August 8, 2017 meeting. Carried.
Opportunity For Persons to Address Council
Reports of Committees & Projects
Report from Parks, Recreation & Conservation Commission: Jeff Lehman announced the city received the permit to do the dredging at the boat landing. That’s scheduled to take place this Fall. Dave Anderson asked if the boat slip will be all set for the Spring. Jeff said it would be. He said the parking lot area by Weinstein’s has been leveled off in preparation for the bike path. Jeff said one pedestrian bridge has the I-beam installed and they hope to pave this fall. The concrete top for the observation deck on the bike path should be poured this week. The Chautauqua Lake Association cut back weeds this week. Dave Anderson asked when Union Concrete would be installing the pedestrian bridges. Jeff said they have the permit into the DEC to pull out the sheeting by the Board of Public Utilities. Bill Rice said the DEC is enthused about pulling out the sheeting. Bill Stevenson asked if cranes can be used to pull it out. Jeff said they’re going to try. He said the rip rap is in and the bridges will be set in October. The ramps will go in after that. Bill S. asked how the bridges will be put together. Jeff said they will be installed in three sections. Bill said this is great news. He said Paul Stage wanted to know when the dredging permit was approved because he wants to advertise that the Belle will be at McCrea Point Park next year. Julia said he will just need to talk to the city first about a lease agreement. Jeff doesn’t have a price on pilings removal. The BPU is willing to pay up to a certain amount so it’s not happening for sure. Jeff agrees that everyone wants them out through. Dave A. asked where the kayak launches were going in so they can determine where the bed tax project can take place. Jeff said there has been preliminary discussion on that. Twan said he will need to know by May or June. His concern is access. Jeff said they are looking at putting a launch in by the BPU Parking lot to the east by the storage business. Dave said they’ll need to coordinate about the Warner Dam in terms of kayak safety. Jeff said there was money in the DRI for buoys. It’s been given to the BPU to figure out. He said there’s a DEC project scheduled for dam improvement. They’re looking at putting in gates. There also will probably be signage on the eastern pedestrian bridge warning boaters to not go past that point. Twan asked if the bridge is close to the water. Jeff said it’s ten feet above the water. Russ Diethrick asked if we’ll have cameras down there. Jeff said they’re having Mark Dean look at the cost for cameras for the entire Riverwalk. He said the camera feed goes into Jamestown Police. Dave said we could go back and identify vandals.
North Shore Discussion: Dave Anderson and Twan Leenders discussed concern regarding natural habitat on the north shore of the Riverwalk. They desire to put in native plants. Dave said he knows they have to work with Gebbie Foundation on that. They want to put in native dog wood, spice bushes and other native plants. Bill Rice said they need to keep the Local Waterfront Revitalization Plan (LWRP) in mind, which calls for specific plantings. The north shore by the Comedy Center is scheduled for more development. Twan said he wanted to avoid the south shore issues there. Bill said rip rap could be installed. Twan wanted to create stabilization. Dave said he wanted a multi-use area and have a natural habitat in that area. Bill R. said they have to be careful because of proposed development on the south shore by the storage business. Dave A. said they’re working with Soil & Water on grants. Twan said it’s mostly for rip rap. Bill cautioned that they need to look at the LWRP plans so that they’re not in conflict. Doug Champ said rip rap is not the only solution because the run off is coming from above the river. Bill said the plans including drawing people to that area for concerts etc. Twan asked the timeline for everything. Jeff thinks we can concentrate on the area behind the BPU for now. Twan said there will be erosion happening downstream. Dave suggested plantings would improve development. Jeff said we can do both. Bill R. said they need to be conscious of not putting in something that attracts species that then have to be relocated. Twan thinks plantings in the meantime will help. Russ asked for a timeframe. Bill said it will take a number of years for development to go forward. The goal is to attract people to the Riverwalk. Dave said plants are needed for that. Bill said it will be public uses that bring people there, not factories. Twan said we’re talking about the same thing and that the Riverwalk path is not being changed.
Warner Dam: Bill Stevenson asked Bill Rice if Gebbie has come up with anything regarding Warner Dam. Bill said the BPU will be the one to do the work. There is about $20,000 in money from the Downtown Revitalization Initiative but he doesn’t know if that will be enough. Twan asked if there was a concept done on it yet. Bill said not yet.
River Clean-Up/CLWMA Grant Application: Bill Stevenson said Doug Champ relayed that the Chautauqua Lake Watershed Management Alliance has $100,000 to do projects. Bill said he would like to see something about getting garbage and debris out of the river between Panzarella Park and McCrea Point Park. A proposal is going before the CLWMA regarding that. Bill S., Doug and Twan will be going to a meeting next Thursday in Harmony about that. Everyone is welcome to attend. Bill S. and Vince Liuzzo walked that part of the river and Vince has ideas on how a clean up could be done. Doug said the approval of the project is not guaranteed with other groups asking for money. This is a project that would have to be done this year. Doug said the BPU is the applicant since it’s the dues payer. The proposal asks for $24,000 but Doug is hoping for at least $20,000. Vince L. said he grew up on Hopkins Street by the river and now has his business in the former Dahlstrom’s Building so he’s been by the river all his life. Vince said he can forward a proposal to the Riverfront Management Council. The project area would be from the bridge at McCrea Point down to the Sprague Street bridge. He looked at two methods and access to flat extraction points is the preferred method. Vince would like the to see longevity for the project because there’s no way to get it all done in this one instance. His goal is to do as much as he can this time so that there’s interest in funding it again. Dave A. asked what Vince’s business is. Vince said he’s a business arborist. Dave A. asked if the charge is to make the river safer for small boaters. Bill S. said yes, it would be done so the river is more attractive and if the project works it can show a need for this kind of work. Vince said debris from old docks and car parts is in the river but they will find out what’s in there from this project and devise a way to clean it up. Dave A. said the Conewango Association cleaned a lot out of the river during a Spring clean-up. They had a crane and could pull out large objects. Bill S. talked to CLA Executive Director Doug Conroe and if they’re still operating they will assist Vince in the clean-up. Bill Rice said the area by the railroad bridge is the shallowest area of the river. Vince said the goal is to have many spots to extract from. He said this is not a get-rich scheme and if all he does is take pictures of where people can get started on a clean-up project, he’s happy with that too. Bill S. said this came up suddenly as an opportunity and hopefully will help with bed tax project applications in the future. Twan said the Gebbie Foundation is interested in mapping the riverbed. Bill R. said they’d like to get boat traffic but they need to have a map and have DEC evaluate before they dredge. Vince thinks there’s an advantage to having a tree specialist evaluate the trees on the river as well. Bill R. asked if this project will need to be bid. Doug said the BPU is the applicant but the project, if funded, would have to be done this year. Jeff said if the project is under $35,000 it wouldn’t have to be bid. Vince said not every tree company has a crane. Dave A. warned that Soil & Water might come up against regulations on prevailing wage and have to bid a project like this out. Bill R. said while putting together a train excursion study, Erie County donated $5,000 to the effort and we had to go out for a request for proposal on that project.
Misc: Bill S. met with Dave Paterniti and Dave said there was a need for “No Wake” signage on the river. Jeff said that’s something that can be worked on over the winter.
Doug said the joint meeting discussion should be kept going because it’s important to connect with everyone so we all know what we’re doing. He thinks there is an educational component missing from schools. He thinks something like a Chadakoin Summit Discussion is needed. Bill S. said we should do that. Julia said there was space in City Hall for such a meeting.
Discussion: Good Of The Order
The next meeting is Tuesday, October 10, 2017 at 5:30 pm.