This award recognizes a project that demonstrates the integration of accessibility characteristics into its design and construction.
The Willie Wildlife Marsh Interpretive Trail is a wonderful example of an accessible trail that blends into the natural environment.
Willie Wildlife Marsh Interpretive Trail, located on Peck Hill State Forest in Fulton County, New York had fallen into disrepair. As part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's Adventure NY Initiative to connect more New Yorkers with nature, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation took over the task of rehabilitating and improving accessibility to the trails and boardwalks in this unique environmental area. Work began in 2016 in partnership with the Excelsior Conservation Corps and the Student Conservation Association Adirondack Corps. The project included replacement of three boardwalks, a new 0.4-mile wheelchair-accessible trail and trailhead leading to an accessible viewing platform and picnic area, and rehabilitation of the surrounding 1.5-mile foot trail. All three boardwalks, which provide scenic views of the marsh and wildlife, were built higher off the water to eliminate any threat of future flooding. The parking area was also resurfaced and designated, accessible spots were created. The 1.5-mile trail explores a beautiful wetland habitat. The marsh is alive with wildlife. The Willie Wildlife Marsh Interpretive Trail is a wonderful example of an accessible trail that blends into the natural environment.
2017: Hawk Mountain Sanctuary