Naomi

A super group of people like you helped make it possible for outdoor adventurers like me to ride the Accessibility Trail here in Mt. Tom State Reservation, Holyoke, MA. Thanks to people like you a smooth and fun-to-ride trail now extends along Lake Bray to the new 55 foot bridge behind me that they built. I’d love to be able to chair-ride with friends all the way around Lake Bray. With help from you and your friends, me and mine, we can make it happen. Want to know more? E-mail me at treble13@comcast.net.

Whiting Street Reservoir Study Committee (WSRSC)

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Front page image from the study.

The Whiting Street Reservoir Study was created by order of the Holyoke City Council in 2019.  It’s committee, the Whiting Street Reservoir Study Committee ( WSRSC ) was formed in 2020 and given a charge “to consider all aspects of the Whiting Street Reservoir to include reviewing costs to maintain and repurposing it for future use as well as ensuring that reasonable environmental considerations are maintained.” The WSRSC would also address future uses of Whiting and the surrounding area.  By 2021 it had became clear the focus of yesteryear had changed much and would call for numerous stakeholders to come together to better serve our city as well as Mt. Tom.

To accomplish its charge, the Committee decided on the following tasks:

• Investigate the laws and protections that currently exist for the reservoir

• Investigate the effect of the current uses and any future plans of the adjoining
properties to the reservoir

• Hold a public meeting to gather public input and understand future needs and
wants regarding the reservoir, and

• Consider potential new revenue sources including expanded uses

After completing the above tasks, the Committee has reached the following conclusions and recommends the following:

• Develop a Vision Statement and North Holyoke Master Area Plan to guide use, protect resources, engage stakeholders and benefit the citizens of Holyoke.

• Implement the vision and major components of the North Holyoke Master Area
Plan, by establishing an Areawide Management Council, sponsored by the City of Holyoke; the Council would include adjoining property owners or managers, and engage citizens, in order to coordinate area management.

• Ensure long term protection of the Whiting Street Reservoir (WSR) as a resource for the Citizens of Holyoke, through conservation restrictions or other means

• Assure availability of the reservoir to serve future water needs for the City of
Holyoke

• Allow for passive recreation while enhancing visitor safety, environmental
education, and accessibility to the communities of Holyoke and to the public

Holyoke City Council will, on January 31, 2023, hold a public hearing in Council Chambers to review and share its recommendations. The complete study is at:  https://storage.googleapis.com/proudcity/holyokema/uploads/2022/11/Whiting-Reservoir-Study-Committee-Final-Report-of-Findings-and-Recommendations.pdf