Local and state officials in Ulster County broke ground Tuesday on a welcome center for the county’s entrance to Walkway Over The Hudson, the 6,700-foot long public trail that spans the Hudson River on the former Poughkeepsie-Highland Railroad Bridge.
The $4.5 million welcome center on the Highland side will feature a visitors center and office space. It will be at the walkway’s west approach off Haviland Road in the town of Lloyd.
The project is funded largely through the state Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the project in June 2016 on a visit to the walkway, part of his office’s NY Parks 2020 initiative aimed at funding improvements to state parks. A similar welcome center planned for the walkway’s eastern approach in Poughkeepsie is scheduled to begin construction in 2018.
“Construction of the Ulster welcome center shows that our partners in New York state government recognize the need to invest in parks and recreational infrastructure,” said Elizabeth Waldstein-Hart, executive director of Walkway Over the Hudson.
Opened in 2009, park officials say the trail attracts nearly 500,000 visitors each year.