Niagara Gazette


December 26, 2013

GUEST VIEW: Falls tourism and the parkway removal initiative

Niagara Gazette — Soon 2014 will begin — and 17 years will have passed since the Niagara Heritage Partnership first proposed the Robert Moses Parkway be totally removed between Niagara Falls and Lewiston.

The gorge rim, it was proposed, should then be restored to natural landscapes (with hiking and bicycling trails along the entire length), creating stunning new, accessible parkland; this restoration would have the potential to be the focus of a newly developed, regional market for ecotourism at Niagara.

A brief history of the issue is posted in abundance at

There are large numbers in favor of total removal — over 4,000 individuals have signed petitions, and 85 organizations, some state and national, with a membership base of over one million, have also endorsed removal.

While we’ve compiled impressive supporting numbers on the issue of parkway removal, we’ve scarcely scratched the surface; hundreds of thousands of more people in search of natural, green vacations for families and groups are poised to visit. We could offer tours designed especially for them; they could design their own, online, encompassing the region. We could use direct marketing techniques to encourage groups to hold conferences here for extended stays.

But when those opposed are not ignoring evidence of strong support for removal, what’s their reaction? They say, “Those people aren’t from around here.” Our response to that is: “Yes, that’s one definition of tourists.”

Additionally, in response to critics who’ve long insisted the NHP was unwilling to compromise, we have, in fact, compromised. In accordance with EDR findings, which determined the stretch of parkway between Findlay Drive and the city line was the most significant and should be the first section removed, we agreed that totally removing the parkway from downtown Niagara Falls to the city line at Devil’s Hole would still permit the goal of developing an ecotourism market and we’d be willing to compromise for that. This we did in spite of the fact that unrestricted parkway traffic would still be permitted to drive over the power project and under one end of the Lewiston-Queenston Bridge, something we’d argued was a threat to homeland security. We’d written to the proper authorities about this, and also informed Senator Maziarz and Assemblyman Cerreto (neither of whom responded).

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • NIA Hamilton, Ken mug HAMILTON: Popeye's '7-Minute' guide to educating southerners -- and me! Writer Mark Twain said that when he 14, his father was so ignorant that he could hardly stand to have the old man around. But upon turning 21, Twain said that he was astonished by how much his father had learned in just seven years.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Bianco mug 072514 GUESTVIEW: Business First ranking casts Falls in a new light There are those in the community who like to cite Business First's annual rankings of school districts and speak unfavorably about Niagara Falls' low standing.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • CHEERS AND JEERS: The best --Â and worst -- of the week of July 25 It sure sounds like the Buffalo Bills really will be "Living on a Prayer" as far as Western New York is concerned if the team is purchased by the prospective ownership group that includes rocker Jon Bon Jovi.

    July 25, 2014

  • NIA DeLuca, Michele mug DELUCA: Wegmans call warns of bad fruit I was humming to myself the other day, getting ready for work on a lovely summer morning, when I decided to check my messages on the house phone. I hit the play button and heard a message from Wegmans warning me about some fruit that I had bought at their store. As quick as that, a message with the scary potential to change my life or the life of someone I love.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Glynn, Don mug GLYNN: Ortt jumps on drive to repeal the SAFE Act It was a no-brainer for North Tonawanda Mayor Rob Ortt, a Republican candidate for the 62nd Senate District seat, to join the forces to repeal the state's SAFE Act.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • EDITORIAL: Delaying refuse law really just makes situation worse It's obvious the rollout of the city's new refuse and recyclables collection program has caused confusion and consternation among some city residents and business owners.

    July 24, 2014

  • NIA Giannetti, Robert mug 072414 GUEST VIEW: Village of Lewiston parking issues related to Artpark need to be addressed On Artpark nights, the South Fourth Street area and many other parts of the Village of Lewiston are covered with pop-up parking lots on residential lawns that operate in spite of existing zoning laws prohibiting commercial activity.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Bradberry, Bill mug BRADBERRY: Tourists attracted here by history, beauty, politics As my friend and colleague, writer Don Glynn has so artfully portrayed over the decades, "For many years after the dawn of aviation, U.S. presidents visiting Western New York started at the Niagara Falls Airport. The reason: The main runway here was longer than that of the Buffalo airport and could easily accommodate Air Force One, the presidential aircraft."

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • EDITORIAL: Experience Center vital to tourism here From time immemorial, Niagara tourism leaders have expounded on the need for a first-class orientation center to showcase our assets for the millions of annual visitors here.

    July 23, 2014

  • NIA Confer, Bob mug CONFER: A constitutional convention is not the answer For the past few years it has been popular for folks of the right persuasion (Republicans and neoconservatives) to call for a constitutional convention ("Con-Con") in hopes of passing a balanced budget amendment (BBA.) A lot of people have jumped on that bandwagon; no doubt your email inbox or Facebook news feeds have shown that.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page