|Written by Conservation Commission Admin|
|Wednesday, April 30 2008 09:27|
City of Holyoke Conservation Commission
City Hall Annex- Room 412
Holyoke MA 01040
413-322-5615 Phone 413-322-5651 Fax
Revised FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) are posted below. The new map is still preliminary and has not yet been officially adopted. Holyoke officials encourage residents and business owners to review the proposed flood map to learn about local flood risk and identify any concerns or questions about the information provided. A Public Comment Period will open on November 9, 2012 where property owners will be able to submit appeals and comments related to the map’s accuracy. Once these comments are received and addressed, the maps are expected to be adopted. Once the map becomes effective, any related new insurance and floodplain management requirements will take effect. Residents will have until December 7, 2012 to review and comment on these proposed maps.
DRAFT 2012 OPEN SPACE AND RECREATION PLAN
The Holyoke Conservation Commission is responsible for updating the City's Open Space and Recreation Plan. The Commission is in the final stages of obtaining approval from the Holyoke City Council and from Mayor Alex B. Morse. This plan was developed after an intense round of public participation in the fall of 2011 - 2012. This document can be viewed here: OPEN_SPACE_PLAN.pdf
The City of Holyoke Conservation Commission is responsible for protecting Holyoke’s natural resources.
The Conservation Commission administers and enforces the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act, the Massachusetts Rivers Protection Act and the City of Holyoke Wetlands Protection Ordinance and associated Regulations. These laws protect ponds, rivers, streams, wetlands, floodplains, vernal pools, and other sensitive environmental resources. Projects near these resources require review and approval by the Commission.
The Commission is also responsible for other special projects including management of 2012 Open Space and Recreation Plan, the water chestnut control project at Log Pond Cove, and open space protection.
In addition to a wealth of industrial history, the City of Holyoke boasts a rich diversity of natural resources. The land area of the City of Holyoke is approximately 12,000 acres. Of that, 6,200 acres are classified as open space, 7000 acres are forest, and 605 acres are bordering vegetated wetlands. The City has twelve miles of riverfront along the Connecticut River- An American Heritage River.
Andrew Smith, Conservation Director
Agendas, Minutes, Packets
Learn more about wetlands...
Who are the Conservation Commissioners?
When does the Commission meet?
The Commission meets on the second and fourth Thursdays of each month except in November and December. Meetings are held at either 6:00 p.m. or 7:00 p.m.. Meeting agendas are posted at least forty-eight hours in advance with the City Clerk and outside the Conservation Commission office. Generally meetings are held in the fourth floor conference room of City Hall Annex. The door closest to the District Court is available for entry during meeting hours. During the warmer months, the Commission meets at the Jones Ferry River Access Center, 8 Oscar Street. All members of the public are invited to attend. Meetings are goverened by the Commissions' Bylaws .
Do I have wetlands on or near my property?
Does my project or activity require a permit?
Where can I obtain Wetlands Protection Act Application Forms? What are the filing requirements?
Typically, projects require a WPA Form 1- Request for Determination of Applicability or a WPA Form 3- Notice of Intent. All Wetlands Protection Act forms can be retrieved from http://www.mass.gov/dep/water/approvals/wwforms.htm
City of Holyoke Open Space and Recreation Plan
The City of Holyoke has extraordinary natural resources. The 2005 Open Space and Recreation Plan inventories natural and recreational resources throughout the City, identifies recreational opportunities, and outlines strategies and actions for providing recreational opportunities and protecting natural resources throughout Holyoke. Beginning in 2011, the City of Holyoke will be working on an update to the 2005 Open Space and Recreation Plan. To review the 2005 Open Space and Recreation Plan, please click on the documents below (please wait for the maps to load, as they are large):
What is the Riverfront Resource Area in the City of Holyoke?
All perennial streams and the Connecticut River in the City of Holyoke are protected by the 200' Riverfront Resource Area pursuant to 310 CMR 10.58. There are no areas designated as densely developed in Holyoke. The CT River riverfront from the Holyoke Dam south to Berkshire Street has been designated as an Historic Mill District.
What are the "DEP File Number" Signs that I see around Holyoke?
You may see signs at construction sites which have DEP File No. 186-xxx on them. These signs indicate that the project has been approved by the Conservation Commission and DEP and an Order of Conditions has been issued. 186 indicates that the project is in Holyoke and the last 3 digits indicate the file number. For a listing of recent applications, click here.
Water Chestnut Control Project- Have you seen this plant?
The City of Holyoke Conservation Commission has been instrumental in coordinating control and removal of the 16-acre water chestnut infestation at Log Pond Cove on the Connecticut River since 1998. The project is an example of the value of partnerships in achieving environmental goals. In 2004, the project was presented at the 13th International Conference on Aquatic Invasive Species in Ireland.
The 2008 control season was funded by grants from United States Fish and Wildlife Service and the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. The 2011 season was funded by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. .
What unique resources must be considered when planning development in Holyoke?
Several tracts of land in Holyoke have been designated by the Commonwealth of MA as Habitat of Potential Regional or Statewide Importance and Land of High Ecological Integrity. For maps of these areas and additional information on permitting requirements in these areas, please see the Mass CAPS website and DEP. (New as of June 2008)
The MA Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program is responsible for protection and conservation of rare and endangered plants and animals in the Commonwealth of MA. Nearly 47% of Holyoke is designated as Priority Habitat for Rare Species or Estimated Habitat of Rare Wetlands Wildlife and is therefore subject to additional permitting by NHESP. For additional information, use this link Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program
Beavers- Nature's Engineers
Most Holyoke human-beaver conflicts have been successfully resolved by the installation of water flow devices- also known as "Beaver Deceivers". Read more about water flow devices.
MassWildlife offers additional resources including information on how Massachusetts law prohibits the dismantling or distubance of beaver dams and beaver lodges. Note that wildlife in Massachusetts may not be trapped and relocated.
Additional Internet Resources:
The U.S Army Corps of Engineers authorizes state and local governments to issue permits for work within the waters of the United States in lieu direct Corp’s issuance of a permit, provided the terms of the PGP are met. Permits are valid for five years.
The Conte Refuge works to conserve the biodiversity of the CT River watershed. USF&W is a project partner with the City of Holyoke on the protection of Mt. Tom and the Log Pond Cove water chestnut removal project.
MACC offers training and materials for Commissions and the general public.
MA DEP is the environmental agency for the Commonwealth of MA.
IPANE provides a search-able database of invasive species in New England and quality links to invasive species topics.
United States Environmental Protection Agency- American Heritage River Program For additional information on the status of the Connecticut River as an American Heritage River.
A Review Holyoke's Stormwater Regulations and their relationship with the City's Ordinance.
Information from the UMass Extension Service about the ecology of stream fragmentation.
|Last Updated on Wednesday, February 06 2013 15:40|