Monday, June 21, 2010

Willow Lake to be restored

From the Queens Tribune:

The lush green wrapped around the calm of Willow Lake remains locked away; the wildlife preserve is in various states of neglect and overgrowth.

In 2006, the end of the footbridge crossing into Willow Lake showed a marker that outlined the trail, which was completely grown over.

Now a timeline has finally been set for the area’s late-2011 reopening, after years of remaining closed to the public.

The Parks Department began rehabilitating the appendage to Flushing Meadows Corona Park last fall, with a multi-phased approach aimed at restoring the area’s natural growth and inhabitants.

“The philosophy is, where you restore the plant life, the animals will follow,” said Bram Gunther, Parks Dept. Deputy Chief of Forestry and Horticulture.

The Parks Dept. is currently eliminating invasive species, namely phragmites, porcelain berries and mugwarts, which Gunther said decreases biodiversity.

There will also be a systematic attempt to stymie erosion through the use of silt fencing and hay bales, which keep soil in place until new plantings’ roots can take hold and provide stability.

And yes, there will be new plantings – plenty of them.

According to Gunther, the agency plans to add just under 13,000 trees to the Willow Lake preserve as part of the City’s MillionTreesNYC initiative.


Anonymous said...

I find it amazing that a large lake smack in the middle of Queens could be so neglected for so long. (I also find it amazing there are no bike lanes anywhere near Queens Blvd, but that's neither here nor there.)

Anonymous said...

They need to re-open the pedestrian bridges, too. MTA stole access to the one behind 78th Ave, and the one behind 72nd Road is fenced off as well. 15 years ago, you could walk the trail with easy access. Now, you have to dodge Jewel Ave. traffic.

Does anyone know if the east bridge over the VanWyck is open?

Anonymous said...

These "lakes" are actually only inches deep, and are really part of the tidal estuary of Flushing Bay. Unless the city controls plant encroachment and sedimentation, they will fill in fast and become merely mosquito habitat.

Joe said...

There are locks under one of those bridges, the motors and gearing look good.
Back in 1964 the tides were controlled by them.
BTW the new pumps at the Unisphere are finished. 2 pumps with a wind sensor. However they are not on and the water was drained after the test

Anonymous said...

The Friends of Willow Lake is a community group in the area, they are a wealth of information on this site.

Anonymous said...

The Friends of Willow Lake is a community group in the area, they are a wealth of information on this site.