Town proposes extensions to Port Washington walking trails

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Port Washington Bay Walk may be extended 3,500 linear feet as set forth in the Town of North Hempstead's 2019-23 capital improvements plan. (Photo courtesy of Google Maps)

The Town of North Hempstead has approved $2.6 million in its 2019-23 capital improvement plan to extend the Hempstead Harbor Shoreline Trail and Port Washington Bay Walk.

The plan allocates the money to fund both projects and both will be partially financed with grants from the state’s Environmental Protection Fund.

Hempstead Harbor Shoreline Trail will be lengthened by 3,500 linear feet along the western shore of the harbor.

The nature trail runs parallel to West Shore Road and begins at North Hempstead Beach Park in Port Washington.

It was most recently extended by a mile in May 2015 in a ten-year effort to lengthen the trail, which was a quarter-mile long when it opened.

This upcoming extension will increase the trail’s length to almost 2 miles.

The expansion is projected to cost $1.1 million and $450,000 will be paid for with the state grant.

Port Washington Bay Walk, which was opened to the public in July 2017, will possibly be extended south to reach the Town Dock where it is expected to end.

The waterfront park overlooks Manhasset Bay and runs along Shore Road in the Village of Port Washington North.

In addition to the extension, the project may include installation of rain gardens, new shades structures, a concrete stairway, as well as rehabilitation to the existing walkway.

It is all expected to cost just over $1.5 million and the grant obtained amounts to $855,459.

The Town Dock, located just south of Sunset Park and the Village of Baxter Estates, will be having some improvements itself with over $17 million carved out for it in the upcoming capital plan.

Almost $13 million will be used to reconstruct the dock which will include a new parking lot and drainage system, an electric energy efficient pump out system, as well as new lighting for the parking lot, landscaping, and ADA compliant walkways.

The reconstruction will also include the creation of “a deep bay to attract more business via waterway,” according the to the capital plan.

Reconfiguration of the dock is planned with the goal as stated in the plan to situate the lower Main Street, Port Washington area as an economic hub.

Over $4.5 million of the Town Dock’s project funding is assigned to removing aquatic sand which will be paid for in part with funding from FEMA.

The capital plan was voted on and approved on Dec. 18.

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