ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Attendance at state parks rose last year once again, with 71.5 million visitors to parks and historic sites across New York state.

That's according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who announced last week that 2017 attendance was up by 950,000 visitors compared to the previous year. The Democrat says it marked the seventh straight year of attendance growth for the system of 180 state parks and 35 historic sites.

The state is in the midst of NY Parks 2020, Cuomo's $900 million initiative to upgrade park infrastructure as well as historic buildings, campgrounds and trails. Officials say hundreds of improvement projects already have been completed or are under way.

The projects for this year include completing the upgrades to Niagara Falls State Park, the first state park in the nation.

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