Washington, DC—Today, Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-27) announced that the $275,000 he secured for the South Park Lake Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration Project was included in the House Energy & Water Appropriations Conference Report, which was passed by the House of Representatives today.
The preliminary planning for this study recommended dredging and habitat restoration of the 24-plus acre South Park Lake and shoreline, all of which fall under the Army Corps of Engineer’s environmental restoration mandate. Through this project, the Corps will evaluate and identify possible beneficial uses of the estimated 100,000 cubic yards of organic material that may be dredged from the Lake.
“I am pleased that this crucial funding has been included in the conference report,” said Higgins. “The restoration of South Park Lake will be a welcome improvement to the quality of life for people in Buffalo and Lackawanna. We will once again be proud to have South Park Lake in our midst, welcoming visitors and residents alike to visit and enjoy the area. Furthermore, the beauty of the Buffalo Olmsted Parks can be further realized, and be used as the true regional asset that it is.”
This Restoration Project will assist in realizing this waterway’s full functional capacity as an urban resource for scientific, educational, cultural, habitat and recreational activities. It addresses the issues of environmental justice and returns recreational opportunities for urban residents, especially youths, to once again be able to explore and discover an appreciation for ecology and natural systems.
This funding will provide for South Park Lake’s return to a self-regulating ecological system with enhanced water quality for fish and waterfowl, eliminate invasive plant species and restore the physical and biological characteristics of the lake shoreline including vegetation for beneficial public use.
The South Park Lake Project site lies within South Park at the southernmost area of Buffalo. The site is a 155-acre, multi-use public park that is part of the city of Buffalo Olmsted Parks system.
The Conference Report will now be voted on in the Senate before it proceeds to the President for signature.