Protect Shoreline Buffers

P3Protect Shoreline Buffers

5 points possible

Why this matters to the lake?

The native vegetation and soils that surround the lake provide a “ring of protection” against pollutants entering Lake George. These pollutants can reduce lake water clarity and cause undesired algal growth. A native buffer is one of the best and most cost effective ways to protect and improve water quality through the reduction of sediment deposits, and protection from shoreline erosion. The buffer ecosystem also provides food and habitat for fish and wildlife in and around the lake. Alteration of buffers changes or eliminates these resources and functions.


  • Protect the ecosystem services of the forested buffer that surrounds Lake George by avoiding removal of native trees and vegetation. Avoid disturbing the soil within this setback (except or restoration purposes)
  • Preserve vegetation with deeper roots to promote runoff reduction, pollutant uptake, and shoreline stabilization


Indicate on Proposed Site Plan the appropriate setback:

Category Setback from Edge
of Lake Shoreline
Points Points with
Basic 50 ft 2 3
Preferred 75 ft 3 4
Optimal 100 ft 4 5

Exceptions: One point is awarded for sites that protect existing buffers, even if they have less than the setback requirements shown above. Existing footpaths and access points to the lake may be maintained, although property owners are encouraged to keep shoreline disturbance to a minimum. Two points will be awarded for sites that locate redevelopment projects within the existing disturbed areas if it is determined to be less disruptive.

Four points will be awarded for selection of a site without this site constraint.


Include the following information with application:

  • As part of the Proposed Site Plan, show the Lake shoreline and the proposed buffer. 
  • Copy of covenant if applicable.

Other Resources

Existing Regulatory Guidance/Requirements

Adirondack Park Agency (APA) Rules and Regulations, Part 575 

Town of Lake George, Town Code, Section 220-32- Shoreline Construction Standards