The Hollowbrook is a stream that runs from Kent to Peekskill. The watershed is the valley area covering 48 square miles of land and 20 tributary streams. This includes most of Putnam Valley and portions of Kent in Putnam County, and northern sections of Cortlandt and Yorktown in Westchester County.
The City of Peekskill owns the Wiccopee Reservoir at the northern end of the watershed, which has pure clean drinking water. The Hollowbrook serves to carry water from the reservoir and tributaries to a pump station in Cortlandt near Pump House Road and Oregon Road. Water is pumped up the hill to the city's water plant off Frost Lane, where it is tested, filtered and treated before being distributed to about 21,000 residents of Peekskill, Cortlandt and Buchanan.
The Northern Westchester Joint Water Works, pipes water from the Hollowbrook system to 23,000 additional residents in Cortlandt and Yorktown to supplement water from NYC's reservoir system to ensure a year-round supply of water. Additionally, hundreds of homes and businesses in Putnam Valley, along the Hollowbrook and tributary streams, use private wells to supply their drinking water.
Hollowbrook Water Watch (HWW) was formed in 2003 by concerned residents from Peekskill, Putnam Valley, Cortlandt and Yorktown.
Our goal is to protect and preserve the pure quality drinking water from the Hollowbrook watershed and Wiccopee Reservoir.
This organization was formed so that residents and government officials of all municipalities could work together on a regional basis to protect this watershed area.
HWW will advocate local and state regulations that will:
- Include measures to protect the Hollowbrook in the Town Master Plan's of Cortlandt, Yorktown and Putnam Valley
- Obtain land use and environmental regulations to protect the Hollowbrook similar to the NYC DEP regulations already in place for the Croton watershed
- Educate local government officials on the issues relevant to water quality in the watershed and work with them to adopt our objectives into the town planning process.
- Provide information to students and residents who live within the watershed and the area served by the watershed on how they can help protect the quality of their water.
- Monitor new development applications within the watershed and speak at public hearings to ensure the protection of our drinking water.
Hollowbrook Water Watch is a not-for-profit organization, which has the support of local government officials from Peekskill, Putnam Valley, Cortlandt, and Yorktown. We also receive technical assistance and funding from organizations such as Cortlandt WATCH, Putnam Valley Residents Coalition, Hudson Highlands Land Trust, Federated Conservationists of Westchester County, Lake Oscawana Civic Association, Citizen's for Equal Environmental Protection, and The Riverkeeper.