Vanderbilt Mansion Conifer Barrier Environmental Assessment

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LJB prepared the environmental assessment (EA) for the removal and replacement of a stand of mixed white pine and hemlock trees at Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Site (VAMA), west of U.S. Route 9. LJB evaluated possible impacts to cultural resources, vegetation, public health and safety, and visitor use and experience. LJB also facilitated a public scoping meeting for this controversial project and managed the public comments in the NPS Public Comment Website - PEPC. One of the issues identified during the public and agency scoping was balancing the need to restore the cultural landscape and improve public safety while minimizing impacts to sensitive resources. While the condition of the pine barrier had deteriorated to the point where it is no longer serving as a barrier between the roadway and the historic site, and public safety due to tree fall is a consideration, the NPS was concerned with the impacts to the existing forest habitat and any wildlife. As part of the EA, LJB prepared a draft environmental assessment for internal National Park Service (NPS) review; made appropriate revisions to the EA in response to NPS review comments; prepared and submitted the final EA document; printed the final EA document for public review; and prepared the appropriate decision document - a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI).

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