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The Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor is one of about two dozen federally designated national heritage areas or corridors in the nation. The purpose of designating the Erie Canalway as a national heritage corridor is to provide for and assist in the preservation and interpretation of the historical, natural, scenic and recreational resources in ways that reflect its national significance, and to help foster community revitalization.
The Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor Commission is a 27-member, community-based federal commission appointed by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior, based primarily upon recommendations of the Governor of New York and the Corridor's Congressional delegation. The Commission includes the U.S. Secretary of the Interior; seven New York State agency representatives including the New York State Canal Corporation; 11 members recommended by the members of Congress whose districts encompass the Corridor; 2 members recommended by the New York U. S. Senators; and 6 at-large community representatives who live in any county constituting the Corridor, with one member who has knowledge and experience of the New York State Canal Recreationway Commission. Commission appointments were announced in April 2002. Commission meetings are held at least quarterly and are open to the public.
The National Park Service provides a full-time executive director and professional staff to assist with implementing the Commission's goals of preserving the Erie Canalway Corridor's resources and enhancing educational and recreational opportunities in the corridor's communities. The National Park Service also supports the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor initiatives with its internationally recognized planning and marketing experience. For more information about the National Park Service and other National Heritage Corridors visit www.nps.gov for an interactive map.
Explore the Erie Canal and discover America's most famous and influential man-made waterway. Stretching 524 miles across the full expanse of upstate New York, the Erie, Champlain, Oswego, and Cayuga-Seneca Canals are among our nation's great successes of engineering, vision, hard work, and sacrifice. The Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor encompasses New York’s canal system and the communities that grew along its shores. It's a place with stories to tell, great works of architecture to see, history to be learned, and hundreds of miles of scenic and recreational waterway and trails to explore. Whether you travel 15 miles or 500, there's much to discover on the waterway that shaped our nation.