Open Space Advisory Committee

open space pics

Open Space Advisory Committee Members
  • Tom Denny, Chair
  • Jennifer Hunt Dempsey
  • Ed Lindner
  • Anita Morzillo
  • Jeff Cheek
  • Steve Samuell

The Open Space Plan Has Been Updated!!

City Council approved revisions to the 2002 Open Space Plan on July 6, 2023.

The 2002 Open Space Plan Update built upon the recommendations of the 1994 Open Space Plan. The updated plan provided a blueprint and tools for furthering the communities vision of the “City in the County.” It included an inventory of the remaining open space resources within the City including agricultural lands, rural roadways and wooded areas. The plan described the relationships of these assets to one another and how they can be connected to create a network of open spaces. 

The plan also included recommended strategies for open space conservation including creative site design, purchase/donations of land or easements, as well as partnerships with government agencies, organizations, businesses and institutions. The plan recommended the establishment of a dedicated source of funding for the purchase of land for permanent conservation and/or recreation. In 2002 the city established an open space fund which has been expended over 20 years for the expended for the purchase and protection of lands such as Pitney Farm, Waterfront Park, and lands along Loughberry Lake, Spring Run, and Kayerdeross Creek.  

The 2023 Open Space Plan Update was a done in collaboration by the Open Space Plan Steering Committee, Open Space Advisory Committee (OSAC), City Staff, and Consultant Team, MJ Engineering and Land Surveying, P.C. Membership of the Steering Committee included representatives from the Open Space Advisory Committee (3), Saratoga PLAN (1), City Center Board (1), Saratoga Springs School District (1), Saratoga Spa State Park (1) Saratoga Springs Recreation Commission (1). 

The new plan establishes the city’s future vision for preservation and conservation of open areas, and sets priorities for the next five years, as required by City Charter. 

Open Space Planning Documents & Presentations


The City of Saratoga Springs received grant funding through the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation to complete a Natural Resource Inventory. Funding was provided in part by Title 15 of the Environmental Protection Fund through the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s Climate Smart Communities Program with matching funds were provided by the City of Saratoga Springs and volunteer time.

The inventory was developed over two years through a team effort, led by City staff, the Open Space Advisory Committee, and LaBella Associates, the City’s professional consultants. Key contributors include local scientists and resource management experts, members of the City’s Open Space Advisory Committee and Climate Smart Task Force, faculty and staff from Skidmore College, graduate students from the University of Albany, and public input at various stages of the process.

NRI's are composed of listing and descriptions of naturally occurring resources in a community and generally include:
  • Maps showing the location and extent of important resources such as groundwater resources, farmlands, significant wildlife habitat, and other related items.
  • A database of information providing the factual basis for resource management and land use decisions.
  • A narrative summary which describes the NRI goals, summarizes the findings of the inventory, and details the methods used to evaluate the results.
The NRI is the first step to determine the baseline for updating the 2002 Open Space Resource Plan as well as the future creation of a Climate Resiliency and Vulnerability Assessment.

NRI Final

 NRI Public Workshop 1/31/2019 Presentation:

NRI Public Workshop - 1/31/2019