So as the details of the Nik Wallenda/Michael Chan meeting were coming out, there were also reports that if this is going to happen at all, it has to happen as a walk between the two countries. Apparently New York State officials have said a walk solely on the US side is not an option. It would cost too much money. This doesn’t really make sense to me. One of the big things that Mr. Wallenda was promoting to the Niagara Parks was that it wouldn’t cost them anything, as he would cover the costs for everything. If he would do that here, wouldn’t he do that in the US?
From the Niagara Falls Review:
It’s America to Canada — or bust — for Nik Wallenda, according to New York State Parks.
In a statement sent to The Niagara Falls Review Friday evening, New York State Parks Commissioner Rose Harvey said she has reached out to the tightrope walker to inform him the agency can’t support a high-wire act limited to the American Falls.
Wallenda has not been able to secure approval for an international crossing from Canadian authorities.
“A walk limited to the American Falls is not what New York approved or envisioned in legislation authorizing Nik Wallenda to traverse the Niagara River Gorge from the United States to Canada,” Harvey said in the statement.
“The costs to New York State of managing a walk only across the American Falls would exceed $1 million in direct state expenses, while, because of the physical topography of Niagara Falls and crowd-safety concerns, the number of people who could watch such a walk would be extremely limited.
“As a result, despite the costs to New York State, the vast majority of people on the U.S. side would be turned away from the park and never see the walk.”
From WKBW Channel 7 in Buffalo:
New York State Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Commissioner Rose Harvey on Tuesday outlined a three-part plan to ensure that Niagara Falls State Park offers a welcoming and attractive visitor experience that matches the natural beauty of the Niagara River falls and gorge.
“Governor Cuomo’s administration is fully committed to revitalizing New York’s economy, and Niagara Falls State Park is a critical part of the economic future of Western New York,” Harvey said. “The facilities at Niagara Falls State Park need to match the expectations of 8 million visitors coming from around the globe each year to see the iconic falls. State Parks staff takes great pride in the park and we will dedicate ourselves to improving and enhancing the facilities that complement the falls.”