100 Ideas for New Paltz

8. get rid of poison ivy in parks

Posted in agriculture, environment, parks, public health by Jason West on June 12, 2009

Borrow some goats from a local farm to graze at Sojourner Truth Park – goats eat poison ivy before grass, and they can eliminate poison ivy without use of toxic chemicals.

Thanks to Terence Ward for pointing out that only certain breeds of goats like poison ivy — Spanish and Angorra goats to be precise.

a spanish goat

a spanish goat


17. skate park

Posted in parks by Jason West on June 12, 2009

Turn the abandoned basketball court across from St. Joseph’s Church into a small skate park.

18. clean up medians and other often overlooked public spaces

Posted in art, infrastructure, parks, public health, sidewalks by Jason West on June 12, 2009

Work with the Town Court to coordinate more community-service projects to be supervised by the DPW and Town Buildings and Grounds Department in order to clean, repair and re-plant sidewalk landscaping and small medians around the Village and Town, possibly with a view towards using appropriate spaces for public art.

33. create a pocket park

Posted in parks by Jason West on June 12, 2009

Create a small pocket park overlooking the Wallkill River at the head of the Carmine Liberta Bridge on the Huguenot Street side.

pocket park

39. simplify approvals for parades and park use

Posted in parks by Jason West on June 11, 2009

Make approvals of park use and parades an administrative function of the Village Clerk and Mayor – it’s an admin-istraive detail and having the Village Board discuss them eats up valuable time that could be used on broader, long term policy.

40. create a park at the water treatment plant

Posted in infrastructure, parks, planning and construction by Jason West on June 11, 2009

Create a public park out of the sixty Village-owned acres around the four resevoirs on Mountain Rest Road at the water treatment plant. It abuts Mohonk, is beautiful land and if the public can use the Ashokan Resevoir, they should be able to use the Mountain Rest Resevoirs.


41. fix the springtown road boat launch

Posted in parks, wallkill river by Jason West on June 11, 2009

Invest in the Village-owned land and boat launch on the west side of the Wallkill River off Springtown Road. The boat launch is eroded into a very steep, greater-than-forty-five-degrees.

42. should the village be getting rent from watchtower farms?

Posted in agriculture, parks by Jason West on June 11, 2009

Explore whether Watchtower Farms is paying the Village to farm several acres of Village-owned land around the boat launch on Springtown Road. If not, negotiate rental payments with them. No one should be able to use public property for their private business, and a religious business doubly so.  In the picture below, the center parcel is owned by the Village of New Paltz.  While not a precise overlay on the satelite photo below it, you can get a sense of how much public land is being farmed.

village boat launch

44. plan tree planting for the effects of global warming on forests

Posted in agriculture, climate change, environment, parks, smart growth by Jason West on June 11, 2009

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has published data about the effects of global warming on Hudson Valley tree species over the next century. Our local trees are going to change from a maple-beech-birch mix to an oak-hickory-pine. According to the DEC, maples are almost definitely on their way out by about 2070-2100. Tailor both public and private tree plantings to those species most likely to survive the climate changes of the next century

46. lay out concrete step-by-step plans for carbon reduction

Posted in agriculture, climate change, energy, environment, green building, parks, smart growth by Jason West on June 11, 2009

Once a concrete number defining the Four Governments’ carbon footprint is established, design a program of tree plantings, green building codes, public transit, automobile usage reduction, etc. to not only reduce our collective carbon footprint, but to reverse it, making New Paltz into a carbon sink.