Revitalization of Former Theme Park Site Will Bolster Local Economy, Serve as Gateway to Recreational Opportunities in the Adirondacks
Campers Can Begin Booking at the State's Newest Campground Facility for June 28 - October 14
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced today that reservations for the new Frontier Town Campground, Equestrian and Day Use Area in the Adirondacks are now open. Reservations can be made for this coming summer season - June 28 through Columbus Day weekend - and interested campers are encouraged to book campsites early since demand is expected to be high for the State's newest campground.
"Between camping and hiking, fishing and boating, the outdoor recreation opportunities in the Adirondacks are endless, and Frontier Town's new campground facility is right at the heart of it all," Governor Cuomo said. "By breathing new life into this site, we are showcasing all that the region has to offer and strengthening the status of the Adirondacks as a global destination."
"Frontier Town is key to Governor Cuomo's plan for creating a Gateway to the Adirondacks that attracts visitors to New York's natural wonders and boosts local economies," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "As visitors look to plan their next getaway, Frontier Town will provide incredible experiences, with many amenities that are unique to State facilities in the Adirondacks so that people of all ages and abilities can explore and enjoy this region."
The Department of Environmental Conservation-managed campground at the site of the former Frontier Town theme park was designed in collaboration with the Office of General Services and C.T. Male Associates. It includes 91 campsites to accommodate a range of camping and visitor experiences, including:
- An equestrian camping area with 33 sites modeled after the camping areas at DEC's Otter Creek Horse Trail facility. The area includes electrical hookups and a pavilion;
- A recreational vehicle (RV) and trailer camping area with space for 13 sites with electrical hookups, fireplaces, and conveniently located water spigots. The RV area also includes a playground;
- A tent camping area with a total of 45 tent sites, including three group camping sites; three walk-in camping sites; four sites with electric vehicle charging stations; two shower buildings; a playground; and two pavilions;
- A seasonal day-use area along the shoreline of the Schroon River will be available to campers and visitors to enjoy a pavilion, two playgrounds, two electric vehicle charging stations, and a comfort station.
- Within the Frontier Town Campground, Equestrian and Day Use Area, a network of pedestrian trails will take visitors to four viewpoints: two along the Schroon River and two overlooking an oxbow wetland.
The campground, a signature project of Governor Cuomo's Adventure NY Initiative, was designed to provide accessibility to people of all ages and abilities and includes many Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)-compliant features. The facility's universal design enables everyone, including seniors and families with small children, to access all amenities consistent with the Governor's 2018 Executive Order to make New York the first age-friendly state in the country. All campsites, showers, and restrooms are accessible. All campsites are fully accessible including accessibly-designed picnic tables and fireplaces. In addition, the campground features two ADA-compliant horse mounting ramps.
To make a reservation and start planning your Adirondack adventure, visit the reservations website. EST. Depending on construction timelines, additional dates may be released at a later time. For additional campground details, visit DEC's website.
In his 2017 State of the State address, Governor Cuomo announced the creation of a master plan to establish a tourism hub at Exit 29 of the Northway in the town of North Hudson. The Upper Hudson Recreation Hub Master Plan included plans for the Frontier Town Campground as part of the State's effort to establish a Gateway to the Adirondacks that links local and regional outdoor recreation experiences in the Adirondack Park, bolsters tourism, and strengthens the North Country's regional economy. New York State and the Open Space Institute, working in collaboration with five neighboring Adirondack towns, engaged the Chazen Companies to create a blueprint for a new recreation hub to improve local amenities, expand access, and draw increased visitors to the park.
A key component of the master plan is a $19 million State investment through NY Works to develop the new DEC campground on approximately 91 acres of land owned by the town of North Hudson and Essex County. DEC will operate the campground, designed to complement the site's topography and natural features, according to the terms of a conservation easement that allows for amenities not found at other DEC campgrounds.
DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said, "Today is another exciting step towards realizing Governor Cuomo's ambitious vision to bring the Frontier Town experience to Adirondack visitors from near and far. Families and individuals who come to this facility will be treated to beautiful sights and memorable adventures that will last a lifetime. I encourage everyone to begin planning their Adirondack vacation now and reserve a spot to be among the first at this wonderful new facility."
OGS Commissioner RoAnn Destito said, "The extraordinary working partnership between OGS and DEC on this project has resulted in a destination that will attract visitors with fond memories of the original Frontier Town and new fans that will discover the Adirondack experience for the first time. This is exactly what Governor Cuomo envisioned when we embarked on this ambitious project to re-invent a classic vacation spot for the next generation of people who visit our wonderful State and will find yet another reason to say 'I Love NY."
At the launch of the project, OGS awarded a site preparation package to The Wesson Group of Johnstown. Contracts to build the new campground, equestrian center, and day use area were awarded to Luck Bros. Inc. of Plattsburgh for construction; Weydman Electric, Inc., a WBE in Syracuse for electrical work; and L.H. LaPlante Company, Inc. of Plattsburgh for plumbing and mechanical.
The design of the campground limits disturbance to the natural environment to the greatest extent possible, and the preservation of vegetation, wetlands, and topography were all considered in the design. Roadways, trails, and utility corridors follow natural grades in an effort to limit land grading and tree clearing. Rather than placing asphalt concrete which sheds runoff, a porous pavement surface has been utilized for the parking and camping surface within the equestrian camping area. This surface will collect and store runoff before permitting it to infiltrate back into the native subsoils. This eliminates the need for a large stormwater management area and additional tree clearing. On-site wastewater absorption beds with their small footprints were utilized for wastewater treatment rather than absorption trenches to again limit tree clearing. Wood chips generated during tree clearing operations are being reutilized in wastewater lift station odor control filters.
A new network of multi-use and equestrian trails connecting the campground to the neighboring area is being designed. It is anticipated that the campground trails will connect to the existing trail network across NYS Route 9 and part of the Schroon Lake-North Hudson Snowmobile trail network known as the "Ti to Co Line Trail," and will provide connectivity to the Hammond Pond Wild Forest to the east and the Palmer Pond Bridge connection on the west, leading to publicly owned lands including the Boreas Ponds Tract and Essex Chain Lakes Complex.
Senator Betty Little said, "The community of North Hudson in this very special part of the Adirondacks is poised to benefit enormously by this investment. The construction jobs have already boosted the local economy. But now the real excitement begins as those making camping reservations eagerly look forward to their special trip to the Adirondacks. I was pleased to support funding in the State budget proposed by Governor Cuomo, who not only recognizes but prioritizes the importance of investing in tourism opportunities in our region, and thank Commissioner Seggos and DEC for working with the community to create what no doubt will be a very cherished experience for visitors."
Assembly Member Dan Stec said, "The new Frontier Town Campground, Equestrian and Day Use Area will allow visitors of all abilities the opportunity to experience these wonderful amenities and beautiful resources the Adirondack Park has to offer. This new facility will provide new recreational opportunities with the multi use equestrian trails that will allow the ability to connect with neighboring trails along with a state of the art camping experience. This investment will continue to grow the tourism industry in the Adirondacks and will create many new economic opportunities for the surrounding communities."
Town of North Hudson Supervisor Stephanie DeZalia said, "On behalf of the Town of North Hudson-We welcome NYSDEC and the New Frontier Town Campground, Equestrian and Day Use Facility. We are honored to be a part of the Adventure NY initiative and to be host to "The Gateway to the Adirondacks". It is exciting to see this phase of the Master Plan nearing completion and I look forward to seeing Frontier Town come "Alive" again. Many have inquired about reservations and I have no doubt this campground will fill to capacity in no time at all."
Former Town of North Hudson Supervisor Ron Moore said, "In his 2017 State of the State address, Governor Cuomo announced the master plan to establish a tourism hub at Exit 29 of the Northway in the Town of North Hudson. I am ecstatic that we will be accepting reservations for the new Frontier Town Campground, Equestrian and Day Use Area and that we can now say, that as of June 28, 2019, WE ARE OPEN FOR BUSINESS! This new recreation hub creating a Gateway to the Adirondacks and centered here in North Hudson will bring visitors from all over the state and the East coast. Coupled with Boreas Ponds tract and Essex Chain of Lakes, the planned community connector trails to the towns comprising the Five Towns Upper Hudson Rec Hub of Minerva, Newcomb, Indian Lake, Long Lake and North Hudson, it will provide new and unique recreational opportunities that will make this a world-wide destination for people to enjoy all that the Adirondack Park has to offer. I express my deepest appreciation to Governor Cuomo for his vision and continued commitment to revitalizing the North Country's economy, bringing new jobs and creating the opportunity for business growth. I would also like to thank Commissioner Seggos and his staff for their vision and commitment in making this new recreational opportunity possible."
Shaun Gilliland, Chairman, Essex County Board of Supervisors, and Town Supervisor, Town of Willsboro said, "Essex County is proud to be a partner with NYSDEC and the Town of North Hudson in the successful and ongoing development of the Upper Hudson recreation Hub. This initiative is a tremendous boost for the region and Essex County in particular. The rapid transition of this phase of the development with the opening of the Frontier Town Equine facility and campground is a true model of success in service to the citizens of Essex County and New York State."
Kim Elliman, Open Space Institute president and CEO said, "The Open Space Institute is proud to be a partner in expanding recreational opportunities which further public enjoyment of the resources in this region of the Adirondack Park. Governor Cuomo is to be applauded for his commitment to land conservation, the promotion of strategic recreation, and for drawing visitors to enjoy this remarkable landscape."
Randy Preston, former Chairman, Essex County Board of Supervisors, and Town Supervisor, Town of Wilmington said, "This is opening the door to the great vision that DEC had and this will revitalize the southern part of the Adirondacks and Essex County."
Since taking office in 2011, Governor Cuomo has made unprecedented investments in the tourism industry throughout the state, resulting in historic levels of visitors and direct spending. In 2017, New York welcomed a record 243.8 million visitors who spent $67.6 billion, generating a total economic impact of more than $100 billion for the fourth straight year. Tourism is now the state's third largest employer, supporting 938,800 jobs annually.
More than 12.4 million people visited the Adirondacks region in 2017 - over 460,000 visitors more than 2016, and a nearly 20-percent increase since 2011. Regional tourism generates more than $1.4 billion in direct visitor spending, including $178 million in State and local taxes, and supports more than 21,300 jobs across six counties.