389 Acres for Anne Arundel Cty. Greenway (MD)

Annapolis, MD, 8/19/02 — County Executive Janet S. Owens announced today the protection of property in the Magothy River watershed. A 389-acre property of primarily forested land flanking North Shore Road in the Lake Shore area of Pasadena was protected through a partnership with the nonprofit Trust for Public Land, which purchased the land from the family of the late Edward Looper. The majority of the property (369 acres) will be used for passive recreation such as hiking and horseback riding and is permanently protected as open space by a conservation easement now held by the Maryland Environmental Trust and the Magothy River Land Trust. The county will continue active recreation use on the remaining twenty acres, which contain community athletic fields that have been utilized for decades through the generosity of the Looper family.

“The Looper property, which is the crown jewel of the Magothy River Greenway plan, has long been sought for preservation because of its forests and trails, as well two bogs that offer unique ecosystems which, once prominent in this area, have been all but lost to development,” said Julie Enger, project manager for the Trust for Public Land. “Program Open Space funding through Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources made the protection of this property possible—without which, I have no doubt that the land would have been developed.”

Funding for the $4,890,350 acquisition was provided by the federal Transportation Enhancement Fund, administered by the Maryland Department of Transportation; and Anne Arundel County’s Program Open Space fund.

The property is the keystone of the proposed Magothy Greenway. Its preservation safeguards one of the last large open space corridors between Annapolis and Baltimore and protects regional air and water quality. In addition, the property contains several significant bog ecosystems including Blackhole Creek Bog, North and South Grays Bog, Eagle Hill Bog and Shady Pond. Existing trails on the property are expected to be maintained for pedestrian and equestrian use.

“This is an outstanding example of state and local government working in cooperation with nonprofit and volunteer organizations and the citizens of Anne Arundel County to permanently protect environmentally valuable and sensitive lands for the use and enjoyment of all,” said County Executive Janet S. Owens.

The protection effort also brings Maryland another step closer to its commitment to protect 20% of the Chesapeake Bay watershed by 2010, as set out in the Chesapeake 2000 Agreement. Keeping Our Commitment: Preserving Land in the Chesapeake Watershed, a historic report by the Trust for Public Land and the Chesapeake Bay Commission, documents the need to protect an additional 1.1 million acres of the bay watershed and calls for $1.8 billion in new local, state and federal funding to meet the Chesapeake 2000 goal.

The Trust for Public Land is a national nonprofit organization that conserves land for people to improve the quality of life in our communities and to protect our natural and historic resources for future generations. To date, TPL has protected more than 1.4 million acres of land nationwide, including more than 5,500 acres in Maryland.