Hearing for Electric Trail to be held Oct. 10

The Kinderhook Village Board will host a public hearing on Oct. 10 for the proposal of purchasing land from Samascott Orchards, off Sunset Avenue, which will be used for the installment of the off-road segments of the Albany-Hudson Electric Trail through the village of Kinderhook.

The hearing will start at 7 p.m. The village board meeting is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.

“We have to have a public hearing first,” Mayor James C. Dunham said. After the public hearing, the village board will vote on the land purchase.

The parcel is about a half-acre in size. If the purchase is approved, the Hudson River Valley Greenway — the organization planning the Albany-Hudson Electric Trail — will compensate the money spent by the village for the land and fence construction. Samascott’s has a fence along its property to protect its crop from wild animals.

Compensation would be $12,000 from Hudson River Valley Greenway. The price, in agreement with Samascott Orchards, is for $6,000, not including construction of the new fence.

“They are in favor of the trail and willing to sell it.” Dunham said.

The Albany-Hudson Electric Trail is part of the Empire State Trail, a 750-mile biking and walking trail under construction with a completion goal of 2020. The Albany-Hudson Electric Trail connects the Capital Region to the Hudson Valley.

The trail is planned to run through Schodack, East Greenbush, Nassau, Valatie, Kinderhook, Stockport and Hudson. About 1.4 miles of trail will go through the Village of Kinderhook, according to www.ahettrail.org.

If the purchase is approved, there are several more steps to take before the acquisition is finalized, such as getting the Hudson River Valley Greenway a permit to build the trail and a permit to construct a crosswalk across Albany Avenue in the village of Kinderhook for trail hikers to cross. The trail will also cross behind several properties, including the Columbia County Historical Society.

“If the purchase is approved, we can acquire the property in a couple weeks.” Dunham said.

The village of Kinderhook and the Hudson River Valley Greenway have an agreement in which the Greenway will reimburse all expenses related to the purchase. The village could be reimbursed by Jan. 2019.

When the trail is completed, the village of Kinderhook will be responsible for trail maintenance at a cost of somewhere between $1,114 and $2,261. “Right now, the only fees we have are for the attorney.” Dunham said.