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Central New York Regional Economic Development Council Announces Expansion of Lime Hollow Nature Center

(August 22, 2012)

Central New York Regional Economic Development Council Announces Expansion of Lime Hollow Nature Center

The Central New York Regional Economic Development Council today announced that The Lime Hollow Nature Center held a grand opening for its newest land acquisition, the Osbeck Conservation Area.

Thanks to a generous donation by the Osbeck Family and supported by an award of $53,308 from Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Regional Council initiative, Lime Hollow will officially add the 32-acre tract of land--which borders the Chicago Bog Unique Natural Area to the south and the Cortland County Linear Park (also known as the Lehigh Valley Trail) to the north – to its existing preserve of protected forests, fields, and wetlands. The parcel offers additional native habitat that will supplement Lime Hollow's environmental education opportunities and allow for outdoor recreational activities such as hiking, nature study, and photography.

“Preserving our green spaces is absolutely critical to the economic well-being of any region,” said Syracuse University Chancellor Nancy Cantor, co-chair of the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council. “They not only protect vital natural habitats and resources; they provide rich educational and recreational opportunities that enhance quality of life for all. The acquisition of the Osbeck tract speaks to our ongoing efforts—on all fronts—to position Central New York as a vibrant, forward-looking region in which to live, work, and play.”

“Recreational and natural attractions are integral to the quality of life amenities that make our region attractive to residents and visitors alike,” said Robert Simpson, president of CenterState CEO and co-chair of the CNYREDC. “This project plays an important role preserving and enhancing those assets for Cortland County and beyond.”

Cortland is one of only two counties in New York State outside the Adirondack and Catskill parks that do not host a state park facility. The Lime Hollow Nature Center provides many of the same qualities of life opportunities as a state park, but is a member-supported non-profit whose mission is to "provide year-round environmental education and recreation opportunities through the utilization and protection of the natural and cultural attributes of the Lime Hollow area."

“Our team is thrilled with this expansion and being able to add greater recreational opportunities for area families and outdoor enthusiasts.” said Lime Hollow’s Executive Director, Glenn Reisweber. “This is a wonderful addition to our preserve and moves us one step closer to our dream of connecting precious natural space from the Cortland County Linear Park to the Finger Lakes East Business Park.”

“There is no better sign of a community’s confidence in its future than the commitment to parks, open space and recreational areas,” said Rose Harvey, Commissioner of the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. “Parks and open space provide places for healthy recreation; preserve natural resources; and attract visitors, entrepreneurs and skilled workers. I’m grateful to the staff and supporters of Lime Hollow for enhancing this important community asset, and to the Regional Economic Development Council for recognizing its importance.”

Last year, a total of $785 million was awarded through the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) for job creation and community development projects consistent with each region’s strategic plans. As part of that process, Lime Hollow Nature Center was awarded $53,308 from the Environmental Protection Fund, administered by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. OPRHP made $16 million available in 2011 to assist in the development of parks and recreational facilities to preserve, rehabilitate or restore lands, waters or structures for park, recreation or conservation purposes and for structural assessments or planning for such projects.

Senator James L. Seward said, “The Lime Hollow Nature Center offers wonderful recreational opportunities for area families and tourists while promoting environmental education and sustainability. The expansion will mean improved accessibility, a more diverse visitor experience and a bright future for Lime Hollow. I commend Governor Cuomo for recognizing the park’s importance and special thanks to the Osbeck Family and park volunteers for making this expansion possible.”

Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton said, “These are the happy moments of a legislator’s life – to help inaugurate the expansion of a fine nature center such as Lime Hollow, where anyone, especially the residents of this area, can come to enjoy the peace and beauty of this spot and, perhaps, even learn more about the crucial importance of protecting our ever-more fragile environment.”

To learn more about each regional council and their economic development plans, visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov. For information on how the New New York is working for businesses and Central New York, please visit www.thenewny.com.

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