A new access road was built last year by the county on Jackson Ave for a pumping station. This pumping station is surrounded by 12 foot security fence topped by barbed wire. The new access road would be a perfect staging area for a very limited test program --if the county would agree to the request.
I hope that the county will consider letting one area college or local high school rowing team have access to the lake during early morning hours to test the feasibility of allowing boating on Sprain Lake. My suggestion: limit the number of boats to a maximum of six for one year. And only provide access to the college or boat club that obtains permission from the county to participate in the experiment. There would be no traffic impacts to the Jackson Ave corridor since rowing clubs meet early in the AM before rush hour. Sprain Lake is also a safer place to row since the Harlem and Hudson Rivers are more crowded with boats and less safe.
There is considerable interest in the sport which is growing. Many colleges that have rowing teams offer substantial scholarships to students who excel in the sport. If the county would allow Sprain Lake to be used for rowing - we will help students get into great colleges and obtain scholarships when they are admitted. If Sprain Lake becomes available to high school rowing teams - our local students will have a big advantage when applying to prestigious schools.
There are inadequate rowing venues for the lower part of Westchester.
If the test proves successful the county could conduct a feasibility study to explore other ways to use the lake for recreational purposes. This is the kind of recreational initiative that will help make the county attractive to young families. In addition, the county could generate significant economic development benefits if we would have a first class lake to use for rowing.
INTERVIEW I conducted on WVOX radio with Vinny Houston of Hartsdale, a leader in the effort to promote rowing