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Setting the Record Straight About Croton Point

July 23, 2007

Crotonblog is not given to springing to the defense of the Journal News, the local outlet of the Gannett chain, America’s largest newspaper publisher in terms of daily circulation. In their July 19 story about the unfortunate drowning of Gary Roberts at Mayo’s Landing, they published a sidebar map showing the sites of six drownings in Croton since 1994 and listing the names of the victims.

This story led to the posting of comments “correcting” the Journal News for its erroneous statements that the drownings at Teller’s Point (satellite map) took place in Croton. As comments to the Journal News story, two “corrections” appeared on the Journal News web site signed by “Darlat,” pointing out that Croton Point Park was now owned by Westchester County and was therefore no longer part of Croton. A similar “correction” offering essentially the same misinformation and signed with the name “Maria Cudequest,” appeared on the site established by the North County News, which riskily insists that commenters sign their names.

Crotonblog does not take kindly to erroneous information spread about Croton under the guise of fact. These two separate commenters, curiously hawking the same spurious information, are misinformed. Geographically, Croton Point was part of Croton in 1923 when Westchester County acquired it for use as a public park. It never ceased to be geographically part of Croton after that date, any more than F.D.R. Park, owned by New York State, or Mohansic Golf Course, owned by Westchester County, ceased to be part of Yorktown Heights after their acquisition by government entities.

Croton-on-Hudson is 4.9 square miles in area. This includes Croton Point Park and its 508 acres of parkland, which are included in the 1,113 acres of municipal open space that constitute 36.55% of Croton’s land area. Therefore, technically speaking, the Journal News designation of the six drownings as statistically occurring in Croton was correct.

On July 24, 2007 3:55 PM, Leo Wiegman said:

The drownings this past week are truly horrible, especially for the families and friends of the victims. But if the map that the Journal News had in its print edition was correct, then the statement that 6 drownings (now tragically 7 drowning as of this past Sunday) had all occurred within the political boundaries of the Village of Croton is highly plausible.

See the USGS map, below, that shows village boundaries clearly include Tellers Point and all of the County park at Croton Point. In fact, if someone drowns halfway out in the Hudson, it could still be within Croton.

Most folks do not realize that the village is more than half water. Actually, 56% of Croton is water.

Total surface area: over 10.8 sq. miles
Total land area: 4.8 sq. miles
Total water area: 6.1 sq. miles
(Source: US Census Bureau data)

To help us picture this water-to-land relationship and the actual Village boundaries, I’ve excerpted the attached map from the 2003 Comprehensive Plan.

— Leo Wiegman


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