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OCT 14- OCT 21, 2014

State Park Making (bad) Changes, Not Improvements

October 14, 2014

For 10 years, the view of the rapids have been obstructed by chain link fence at this bridge to Goat Island.

 

GUEST VIEW

Robert M. Onesi

Niagara Falls

The Niagara Falls State Park is a constant disappointment.

Three years of construction fences everywhere.

Another tourist season lost with millions going home unable to enjoy the fabulous views.

There are new snow fences, red tape, red cones and signs through the whole park.

This season it was fenced from Goat Island to Prospect Point. There was access to Prospect Point. Then fencing all the way to the Discovery Center.

The fences are there because the park is making "changes." I am not sure I could call them "improvements."

Every day there are more areas that used to be accessible that are blocked off with red tape, snow fences or signs.

Snow fences turn to permanent railings.

The state continues to block spots so you can’t get close to the water.

Sign used to say 'No water entry."

Now they say 'No Trespassing."

They are now appearing along the Upper Rapids parking.

Get there quick if you want to remember it as it was.

If you have not been to Three Sisters Island after last year’s "IMPROVEMENTS," you may not know that you can no longer climb on rocks and get to the water’s edge on the third island.

You must stay in middle of the island.

Soon after the "improvements," I ran into women who asked me how to get to Three Sisters. She remembered as a teen coming with her parents and climbing on the rocks, rocks worn smooth by the millions who climbed on them.

I had to tell her she was "a year too late. It is fenced and you're not allowed on the rocks anymore. You can’t get near water or go to the east side of the third island where you can look out at the vastness of water about to plunge over the falls."

And all you gorge lovers better step up or that, too, will be railed off. They have already tried to force people to stay on trails in the gorge.

 

People who have fished there all their lives were told "no more fishing, you must stay on trails."

I am not sure who makes these decision or why.

My number one pet peeve for about 10 years is the Goat Island bridges.

You can't see the rapids except through a metal chain link fence that is taller than most people.

Here we are 10 years later. Millions of people have had to take pictures over their heads. I have seen people get on others' shoulders. I have seen them squeeze camera lens through fence. I have seen people holding cameras over their heads in one hand blindly shooting photos and hoping.

Recently I saw someone put their camera on a tripod and hold it up over railing; maybe we can rent some tripods to visitors so they can get a picture without chain links of fence in it.

How many millions have missed views from this bridge?

NY State Parks now has it scheduled for repairs to be completed in 2016.

What a shame

If this happened in Canada I bet it would have been dealt with immediately and repaired.

Less Public Access! At one time, visitors could get close to the rapids at Three Sisters. Now much of the thrilling views are fenced off.

 

 

 

 

 

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