Welcome to The Town of Olive!

Nestled in the Catskill Mountains of New York State is 40,000 acres named the Town of Olive. In 1824, theory has it that it was so named from the biblical story of the dove returning to Noah’s ark with an Olive branch. The Ashokan Reservoir geographically divides Olive–north and south. The hamlets around the shoreline are Boiceville, Olivebridge, Samsonville, Krumville, Shokan, West Shokan, and Ashokan.

The passing of the Water Act of 1905 led to the building of the handmade Ashokan Dam on the Esopus Creek and upon its completion in 1916 created the Ashokan Reservoir, a main water supply for the City of New York-Olive’s largest landowner. The demand for pure, clean drinking water for New York City inhabitants changed the course of history for the Town of Olive and still has an impact on everyday life. The Town center and the majority of the Town’s residents were forced from the rich Esopus Valley and relocated to the nearby foothills. In May of 1997 Land Use Regulations, which could become a model for the rest of the country, became effective as a Memorandum of Agreement was signed between Watershed Towns and the City of New York to provide for protection of water quality throughout the New York City Watershed.

Traveling west on State Route 28, Olive is thirty minutes from Kingston, New York—the first capitol of New York State-and is a little more than an hour travel time to the current state capitol of Albany. Being only two hours north of New York City and totally within the Catskill State Park, Olive has been a seasonal recreational area for New Yorkers. The boarding house days and hunting camps of the 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s have vanished and are now seasonal second homes or primary residences for many city folk.

The major industries of timber harvesting, tanneries, and excelsior mills, which once ravaged the mountains of Olive, have long vanished as the Catskill Forest Preserve was created in 1885 keeping forever the preserve as wild forest lands. The Catskills have been a favorite tourist destination for over 100 years. Today’s Olive is primarily residential in nature, with a large percentage of seasonal residents, and a limited number of backyard farms with victory gardens.

Flood Advisory Committee Recommends Woidt Engineering & Consulting for Local Flood Analysis

The Flood Advisory Committee (FAC) has been presented with six engineering proposals for doing Local Flood Analysis on the Esopus Creek and a portion of the Bushkill Stream from Maltby Hollow Stream to the reservoir as well as completing a Townwide Flood Mitigation Plan.   A subcommittee was appointed to review all six of the proposals with The Ashokan Watershed Stream Management Program (AWSMP) guiding the committee through the process.  Subcommittee members rated the proposals on the relevant experience of the firm and project staff assigned–hydrology and hydraulics analysis, sediment transport analysis, FEMA Benefit Cost Analysis, flood mitigation projects, practicability of the proposed schedule, and understanding of project objectives.  The six firms submitting proposals are Arcadis, Barton & Loguidice, The GEA Group, Gomez and Sullivan Engineers, Milone & MacBroome, and Woidt Engineering & Consulting.

On Thursday, October 30th, the FAC met along with AWSMP representatives to discuss rankings of the firms.  After careful and methodical consideration the FAC opted to interview Milone & MacBroome  and Woidt Engineering and Consulting.  Said interviews were conducted on November 13th, 6:30 pm for Woidt Engineering and 8 pm for Milone & MacBroome.   After thorough discussion the committee members agreed that Woidt Engineering was the firm to recommend to the Town Board;  however, they were concerned that the firm’s Community Rating System experience was a weak point.  Woidt Engineering agreed to revise their proposal to include partnering with a firm to enhance their Community Rating System capabilities.  On December 1st Woidt’s revised request for proposal was submitted and after another review the committee agreed to recommend Woidt Engineering.

Resolution #17 of 2014 Approving Woidt Engineering & Consulting will be presented to the Town Board at the December 9th meeting.  Once this Town Board resolution is approved a grant in the amount of $99,915 will be submitted to the Ashokan Watershed Stream Management Program for funding the Local Flood Analysis, Flood Mitigation Plan, and Community Rating System application.


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