Town of Cape Vincent-Village Comprehensive Plan committee expresses concerns for declining growth.

The Town of Cape Vincent - Village Comprehensive Planning committee met yesterday and continued to address revisions to the lost plan developed in 2003.

The committee was presented with a report indicating that the population and economic performance of Cape Vincent during the last decade was less than ideal. Population growth in Cape Vincent declined approximately 4% from 2000 to 2010. This was a reverse of the the trend of 1970 to 2000 when there was steady growth. More problematic was Cape Vincent's growth compared to other towns in Jefferson County. From 2000 to 2010, Cape Vincent was next to last. It was 21 out of 22 towns in the ranking of population growth within the county. 

Committee members participated in a lengthy discussion addressing the possible reasons for this phenomenon. One committee member opined that the threat of industrial wind development and the malcontent generated by that threat made people stop and think before they consider a move to the Cape.  Others agreed that the appearance of industrial wind turbines on Wolfe Island has prevented many potential residents from purchasing homes in Cape Vincent. 

One committee member, who is also in the real estate business, declared that he had no doubt in his mind that the Wolfe Island turbines and the speculation of more within the river view shed has prevented Cape Vincent property sales. Other area real estate dealers have confirmed that in their discussions. Potential Cape Vincent home buyers lose interest as soon as they hear of the proximity of the Wolfe Island turbines and the threat of more to come.

Committee members also discussed the ever-imposing threat of the Village and Town losing their elementary school. Members felt that young families with smaller children desire a home close to a school. Moving to Cape Vincent and then having their children bussed to Clayton would not be ideal.

Another factor considered by the committee is the impact of Fort Drum. Although Fort Drum has been a substantial growth factor for the rest of Jefferson County, the longer commuting time to Cape Vincent is a negative factor. Also, there has not been a lot of past effort in finding ways for Cape Vincent to take advantage of the growth of Fort Drum.

The Town of Cape Vincent - Village Comprehensive Plan committee appears to be well along in the process and are now reviewing and up-dating the section of the plan which addresses strength, weaknesses of, opportunity, and threats to Cape Vincent lifestyle and healthy development.


  1. Anonymous3/30/2012

    The Wolfe Is turbines will be coming off warranty soon. When they break will the owner replace the gearboxes and blades?

    The Wolfe Is. wind farm is not a forever thing. The underlying cost of it to Canadian electricity consumers is coming to be better understood. The turbines there will come down- not tomorrow or next year - but they will come down - when the massive folly is over.

    So keep working to improve Cape Vincent. It will pay off. Make the waterfront and the Village more attractive. Enact a rigorous zoning law and enforce it. Don't allow public eyesores to deteriorate until they rot into the ground or catch fire, or fall into the River.

    Treat seasonal residents (and the taxes they pay) as an asset to be cultivated and encouraged rather than making them the target of resentment. How may rural towns in upstate NY would love to see their population more than double during part of the year because the town enjoys such special natural advantages?

    Cape Vincent has to focus on the natural "wealth" that it has and showcase it with policies aimed at protecting it and marketing it.

  2. Anonymous3/30/2012

    I own a home in the Cape. I have been paying close attention to wind development issues. My home looks out at the turbines on Wolfe. They certainly distract from the natural beauty of the area, especially at night. I, like many, am on the fence about living within a wind farm. I would probably sell my property prior to turbine construction. I realize that it is too late at that point, my property value would have been diminished by then. I drive down the road and many,many properties for sale. I can't help but wonder if these people have figured it out and got out before the property devaluation. I pray our newly elected officials will get it right.

  3. Anonymous3/30/2012

    Wolfe Island is the poster child around Canada for wind protests. It will be one of the first to go. Eliminated Cape wind speculation and the Cape will prosper. Families in their thirties will see the Cape as a good investment.

  4. Anonymous3/30/2012

    Thank you to all the folks back in the Cape meeting and
    are volunteering the time for our community.
    Well I am away,I still pay my taxes and I appreciate you
    are serving to protect my investment in the place I love best.

  5. Anonymous3/30/2012

    Every since I read this story I have been thinking about ways to improve our Village and Town. We must get strong zoning in effect and enforce it. Look at the propery on the corner of Point and Gouvello, the Valley Pizza place on the corner of william and Broadwy, and the boats in front of the Marina on Broadway. Cleaning them up would sure help to improve out first image for anyone coming to town. We also need a strong Chamber of Commerce, there are many things that can be done to help all of us.

  6. Anonymous3/30/2012

    Talk to Clayton Officials. They certainly know what to do! Kudos.

  7. Anonymous4/02/2012

    Just think how much we would save if they closed Fort Drum, Millions each day. What would they use all that money for.