In a controversial decision, the state Department of Environmental Conservation is recommending the removal of old fire towers on St. Regis Mountain and Hurricane Mountain.
Environmental groups have argued that the towers should be removed because they are in areas that are managed, by and large, as Wilderness. The guidelines for managing Wilderness Areas require the removal of most man-made structures. Also, environmentalists point out that both summits offer wide-open views without the towers.
Nevertheless, many local residents (and no doubt many visitors as well) want the towers to remain. They see the structures as reminders of the region’s history.
Environmentalists have split over the removal of a fire tower on Wakely Mountain, which has virtually no view otherwise. DEC recommends keeping this tower and the observer’s cabin. It would be used as a radio-repeater station.
DEC will hold a public meeting on the Hurricane tower at Keene Central School on Thursday, Feb. 25, at 6:30 p.m. A public meeting on the St. Regis tower will be held at the Freer Science Building at Paul Smith’s College on the same night, starting at the same time.
More information about the fire-tower study is available here.
Click below to read DEC’s news release (PDF file).