Wednesday, 05 May 2021
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Hello--I'm new to this group and landownership (!). I'm interested in building an access road on my land that would go from the road to an eventual campsite (along with a short graveled driveway up a hill for car access to the access road). I want to make sure that the road is as environmentally conscious as possible, and don't know where to start. Is this something a typical excavator would be able assist with? Do I need an engineer? If so, what type? Also, the land is in the NYC watershed to eligible for cost-sharing through WAC--would this type of thing be covered by the cost-sharing?

Thank you!
Jill
1 year ago
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#354
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Hi Jill,
Thanks for using the MyWoodlot forum to post this question and congratulations on becoming a new landowner. I am a new landowner myself as of Feb. 2021.

I will discuss your access road questions with the MyWoodlot team tomorrow and get back with you. Do you know where you want your campsite to be and where the driveway will connect with the highway? Do you know if there are important features such as streams or wetlands that you'd need to cross or go around? How about steep, rocky areas you might want to avoid?

In the meantime, you may find this Best Management Practices (BMP) for water quality field guide to be useful. It's written as a guide for loggers to help them plan for, carry out, and close out timber harvests in a way that protects water quality. However, you may find the Introduction and Before the Harvest sections to be useful for general planning with regards to road location. Later sections cover BMPs to control road surface runoff and erosion, as well as stream crossing options. https://www.mywoodlot.com/images/supporting_information/bmp_field_guide_lowrez.pdf

Talk to you soon.

Kind regards,
Kris Brown
1 year ago
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#355
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Thank you for your quick response. We met with forester Andrew Krutz who sent us that document you linked to and helped us think through answers to many of your questions. Here they are:

Do you know where you want your campsite to be and where the driveway will connect with the highway? YES and YES

Do you know if there are important features such as streams or wetlands that you'd need to cross or go around? THE GROUND IS WET, SO ANDREW ADVISED A PARTICULAR ROUTE THAT IS SLIGHTLY LONGER, BUT THERE ARENT STREAMS TO CROSS THAT WE KNOW OF.

How about steep, rocky areas you might want to avoid?
THERE IS AN UNAVOIDABLE STEEP INCLINE FROM THE ROAD. THERE IS ALREADY A DIRT DRIVEWAY.

Thank you!
1 year ago
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#356
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Hi Jill,

Andrew Krutz (akrutz@nycwatershed.org) will be your best contact in terms of potential cost-share funding for BMPs on this project. Please note that we typically only cost-share BMPs on timber harvests in the NYC Watershed. However, it sounds like this woods road could provide the basis for recreational and woodland stewardship opportunities on your property. So, it is something we could consider.

As I write this, I got word from Andrew that you are eligible for cost-share. He said to remember that the shorter the width of the road the better for water quality (think less soil disturbance). Andrew told me he provided you with a list of contractors that could do this work. If they don't work out, here is a list of Trained Logger Certified (TLC) contractors that you could peruse to find someone in your area: https://mywoodlot.com/category/trained-loggers. You can talk with your contractor about applicable BMPs for your project. Our BMP cost-share rates are located on page 35 of the Forestry Program Handbook: https://www.nycwatershed.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Forestry_Handbook.pdf. Also, here is a link to the BMP Program cost-share application: https://www.nycwatershed.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/BMP-Program-Application.pdf.

In terms of woodland stewardship opportunities, I wanted to put you in contact with Connor Young (Team Leader, Environment and Natural Resources, chy32@cornell.edu) and Pammi Price (Master Forest Owner Program Coordinator, pjp93@cornell.edu) of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Columbia and Greene Counties and the Agroforestry Resource Center. They wanted me to let you know you can sign up for a free site visit from a Master Forest Owner here: http://ccecolumbiagreene.org/agriculture-and-natural-resources/natural-resources/master-forest-owner-volunteers and that they are here for you with resources and tools to get you started with woodland stewardship projects.

I hope this is helpful. Thanks again for using the forum.

Kind regards,
Kris
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