Fate of Town Forest Remains Undecided

In the continuing saga of the Town Forest, Town Manager Kevin Smith said he had been in contact with Conservation Commission Chairman Deb Lievens and Heritage Commission Chairman Art Rugg on the matter.
“Subsequent to one of the last meetings we had, I met with Deb Lievens and Art Rugg to come up with an agreement between the two groups on what should be done with the Town Forest in the short term, middle term and long term,” he told the Town Council on Monday night. “They agreed that in the short term right now, nothing needs to be done with regard to cleaning out the forest. The trail that’s in there is pretty clear at the moment, and I think it’s important to remember right now that it is a trail in a forest, not a forest built around a trail.”

Smith said that in the spring, at the recommendation of the town forester, mitigation of the invasive Bittersweet will take place. At that time they will see whether the trail needs to be cleared again, but any maintenance would be minimal.
“In the long term, what happens to the forest is something I think is going to come from recommendations from the master plan implementation committee and the town council and the voters,” Smith said. “The master plan calls for perhaps having a skating rink in there and maybe making it more park like, but those are long-term discussions.”
He said Lievens and Rugg have agreed to meet if they think more should be done in the meantime.