Groups Seeking Common Ground on Adirondack Issues to Meet

Jul 16, 2013

The seventh annual meeting of the Common Ground Alliance of the Adirondacks will be held on Thursday.

The Alliance is a collaboration of regional business, community, conservation and advocacy groups that meets once a year to find common ground on Adirondack Park issues. This year, between 180 and 190 people are expected to attend forums on tourism development, community sustainability, water quality, economic strategies, and Albany’s perspectives of the park. Adirondack North Country Association Executive Director Kate Fish will moderate the sustainability panel on development of renewable energy. Fish says over the past seven years the Alliance has changed the nature of dialogue and discussion within the Adirondack Park.

Fish says while the meeting lasts only one day, much work is done during the rest of the year.

Adirondack Council Executive Director Willie Janeway will attend for the first time. He says the Alliance has ushered in a new era in the park by creating better communication, cooperation and respect among organizations.

A major initiative of the Common Ground Alliance is the “Adirondack Futures Project.”  A pro bono project by retired strategy consultants Dave Mason and Jim Herman, Adirondack Futures imagines six very different scenarios for the park over the next 25 years. Herman says when the report was released, the key was to look at the park holistically.

Herman says it’s time for the Alliance to think of the park as a series of interactive and integrated systems.

The Adirondack Council’s Willie Janeway says the Adirondack Futures Project of the Alliance has been crucial in showing that 95 percent of park constituents share common visions of the park’s future.

Herman will present an update of the Futures Project during Thursday’s meeting.

The venue for the Common Ground Alliance meeting is changing this year. Since its inception the annual event has been in Long Lake, but this year the Alliance will be at the Newcomb Central School on Thursday, July 18th.