On Thursday January 21, at the Lewiston Senior Center, the Western New York Land Conservancy will unveil the Stella Niagara Preserve Vision Plan. To create the Preserve, the Land Conservancy purchased the property — the largest privately held undeveloped tract of land along the Niagara River — in June 2015 after a $3 million capital campaign. It was opened to the public the following month and features spectacular views, walking trails, fishing access and a place to put a kayak in the water.
The Stella Niagara Preserve will be a world-class, publicly accessible nature preserve that provides an iconic cultural and natural link in the Niagara River Greenway.
As the most high-profile acquisition and project to date by the Land Conservancy, the organization undertook a comprehensive planning process for the ecological restoration and on-going stewardship of the Preserve in keeping with the community’s vision and the organization’s priorities. The group engaged nationally renowned landscape architect Darrel Morrison to create a restoration plan for the site, and also engaged Make Communities to work with stakeholders to establish principles and devise a vision for the Preserve to guide the site’s use, design and maintenance.
The resulting Stella Niagara Preserve Vision Plan focuses on five pieces of Guiding Wisdom sourced from community conversations about the past, present and future potential of this incredible place.
…is an incredible natural setting and provides a unique and crucial area for plant and animal life.
…is a place for people to develop a relationship with nature.
…has cultural, spiritual, and artistic importance.
…has many important stories to tell and lessons to teach.
…will continue to evolve.
This knowledge frames goals and strategies that are clear enough to chart a path forward, but flexible enough to be adaptable to changing conditions and circumstances.
Goals for the Preserve…
Protect and enhance wildlife habitats.
Provide access to the Preserve for people to walk, hike, kayak, canoe, learn, and be inspired.
Protect and celebrate the Preserve’s diverse attractions.
Explore and promote the Preserve’s history.
Learn— and adapt—together over time.
The presentation of the Vision Plan and draft Concept Plan by Darrel Morrison and his team will take place from 6:30 to 8:00 PM at the Lewiston Senior Center at 4361 Lower River Road. There is no cost to attend the presentation, but please RSVP by Tuesday, January 19 at wnylc.ticketleap.com/stella or (716) 687-1225
Read more about the Stella Niagara Preserve on the Western New York Land Conservancy’s website, or download the full Vision Plan here.
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