EDITORIAL: Moreau recreation vision a great step forward

EDITORIAL: Moreau recreation vision a great step forward

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Betar Park

The Betar Park sign welcomes visitors to the park off Jan Avenue in Moreau. The Moreau Town Board voted unanimously to back a 5-year recreation plan in the town.

There are two standard definitions for “community.”

The first is what the town of Moreau has now. It’s a group of people living in the same place with the same values.

The second is that “sense of community” that drives residents to interact and thrive as one.

The town of Moreau took an enormous step toward that second definition last week by adopting a long-term plan to develop its recreation opportunities.

The town’s 19-page report – which can be read on the town website—can really be summed up in its vision for the future:

“The town should be a recreational hub for the entire year, for residents of all ages and physical abilities, to use as a way to enhance their lives,” while allowing “residents access to as many public properties as is feasible.”

We believe that communities need to strive for more than just low taxes and great schools these days. While those assets can make your community a destination for families and businesses, recreational amenities are becoming essential as well.

As the town of Moreau explored what to do next to improve recreation, it evaluated a couple of local neighbors – Queensbury and Wilton – to see what they were doing.

It gave the town lots of ideas.

If there was an epiphany, we suspect it was that the town already has something that many communities lack – space and access to natural resources like the Hudson River.

While there are some big-ticket items being considered – a community pool complex, for instance – that should not scare residents into thinking the town is about to go on a spending spree.

It is clear it intends to go slowly.

It wants to upgrade what the town is currently offering and make sure the community knows of current opportunities through better communication.

It’s a great way to start.

The town has already identified an enormous array of possibilities with a special emphasis on recreational opportunities for residents and their pets.

Consider these possibilities:

- Dedicated trails for cyclists with paved options for wheelchairs, walkers, runners, etc.

- A fenced-in community garden to go with a pavilion for a farmers market (maybe near the community garden).

- A covered ice skating rink with another hockey-only rink.

- Tire pump/bike fixit stations and bike racks at all trailheads.

- More sports fields that would accommodate sports such as lacrosse and soccer.

- A bandstand/movie screen and information booth.

- Practice wall for tennis and new pickleball courts.

- Lap lanes at beach on the Hudson.

- More promotion of equipment that town has for residents to use.

The future appears limitless with suggestions for a waterfront dog park, a loop cycling trail system, conversion of old railway lines to trails to connect the village and downtown.

Many of these things could be done quickly over the next couple years to help grow the recreation community in the town.

Down the road, there could be discussions on a fieldhouse complex and aquatic center, as well as a rowing center, a sky-watcher stand for astronomy and riverfront pavilions.

Honestly, the town could end up with more amenities than a luxury resort.

This is the type of forward vision that all towns need to have.

With the sewer project on Route 9 approved, more businesses will be coming to Moreau. That is a given, so having these type of amenities will make the town more attractive for those businesses and their employees.

The town will grow, prosper and, if done right, have a greater “sense of community.”

The town of Moreau is on the right track and its residents should support its new recreation plan 100 percent.

Post-Star editorials represent the opinion of The Post-Star’s editorial board, which consists of Publisher Brian Corcoran, Editor Ken Tingley, Projects Editor Will Doolittle and citizen representative Al Matrose.

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