Taking advantage of one of our very few stretches of sunny dry weather, the Parks Department has made substantial progress to prepare the new Vosburgh Trails for a Fall opening. These hiking trails will traverse Town-owned open space in the Twenty West (70 acres) and French’s Hollow Road (54 acres) subdivisions. The Twenty West trail will be a roughly 45 minute loop with a shortcut to the top of a vista with views of the open space, stream bed, and Tawasentha Park. The Twenty West trail will link to a trail along a crest in the French’s Hollow Road subdivision which will allow for a 25 minute continuation of the trail to the Watervliet Reservoir and popular pedestrian bridge over the Normanskill Creek. A round-trip hike from Vosburgh Road to French’s Hollow Road will be roughly 3.3 miles.
These open spaces are environmentally sensitive and easily damaged. For these reasons, ATVs, motor bikes, and other unauthorized motorized vehicles are prohibited. At present, the Parks Department has made initial brush cutting of the trail system with plans for final mowing and other improvements to open the trails to residents. The trails also have a few wet areas, and a permanent crossing over a persistently wet area will allow access for trail maintenance equipment.
The trail entrances are marked at locations on Vosburgh Road and at the end of the sidewalk on Millingstone Way in the Twenty West subdivision. In the next few weeks, Boy Scouts will earn Eagle badges by helping construct informational kiosks at trail heads. Please check the Town’s website for news about the opening of these trails.
The Town also recently made free Wi-Fi service available in parts of Tawasentha Park, mostly around the pool house and large pavilion, and will look to expand it to the rest of Tawasentha Park and other parks. This free Wi-Fi service was installed at little cost by purchasing small devices which allow for the “piggybacking” of the Wi-Fi service at the Parks Department’s main office on Route 146. Jeffery Gregory, the Town’s Network and Systems Technician, designed and installed this innovative approach in lieu of the expensive laying of underground cable. The system is also accessible to camp counselors and staff who use laptops to schedule programs, communicate with parents, arrange transportation, and other tasks needed to successfully run an extensive recreational program. This free service allows the Town to avoid the expense of renting MiFi jetpacks. And because it’s tied to an existing location, the Town does not have to set up another account and pay a separate monthly bill.
Starting later this month, the Town will be adding an imbedded video component to its website instead of requiring residents to access the video on a third-party website, like YouTube. The videos of Town, Planning, and Zoning Board meetings will be posted online soon after the meetings. The videos will be indexed, which means that they will be paired with each board’s posted agenda so that clicking on a particular agenda item will take you directly to the start of the video for that item. It is our goal to upgrade our equipment so that we can broadcast live video on the website.
Over the past year, as part of its replacement plan for heavily-used and high-mileage vehicles, the Town acquired four new police vehicles and two pickup trucks for the Water Department. Through the work of Town mechanics, some of these replaced vehicles have found a second life in less demanding settings. Soon, a former police vehicle will be used by the Town’s Senior Services Department to take seniors to medical appointments and a retired Water Department pickup truck might find less intense use by the Buildings Maintenance Supervisor.
Another successful year has come to an end at the Guilderland Performing Arts Center. Over the summer we had several concerts, including the popular Guilderland Town Band and several local and not so local musical groups from Aquanet (80’s cover band) to Skeeter Creek (country) and the ever popular Hey Jude (Beatles tribute). I want to thank residents for attending these free concerts and the Parks Department's grounds crew for their hard work in keeping the grounds well-maintained.
By the time you receive these notes, the new school year will have started. Please be mindful of students waiting for buses and last second dashes to catch the bus. Please also remember that all vehicles must stop and remain stopped when the school bus activates its red lights and extends the stop sign.
On Saturday, September 23rd from 8am to 2pm, the Town is holding the Fall edition of its Household Hazardous Waste Day at the Highway Department Garage, 6338 French’s Mill Road, just off of Route 146 in Guilderland Center. Please review the list of acceptable hazardous waste at www.townofguilderland.org/transfer-station. Also, on Saturday, September 23rd from 9am to Noon, the Town is holding a Document Shredding Day at the Highway Department Garage. Residents can bring four boxes of documents and records without charge. Residents can pick-up passes for both events at the Town Clerk’s Office or Transfer Station.
Thank you for taking the time to read these notes. If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact any Town Department.
Peter G. Barber, Town Supervisor