New York’s canal system is closing for the winter Saturday following a season that saw a sharp decline in traffic.
So far this year, recreational, commercial and tour vessels have passed through canal locks 113,368 times. That’s down 21.7 percent from 144,743 “lockings” last year.
Officials with the state Canal Corp. say the decline is mostly due to fewer recreational boaters, who make up the bulk of canal users. At the same time, they say the number of commercial shipments rose to 58, from just 17 last year.
Canal Corp. Director Carmella Mantello says offseason maintenance and construction work on the canals also is being scaled back this year because the agency’s typical $30 million capital budget has been trimmed to $20 million.
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Categories: Schenectady County