CT Land Conservation Achievements for 2001

New Haven, CT: Today, the Connecticut field office of the Trust for Public Land (TPL), a national nonprofit organization, announced its conservation achievements in the year 2001: the protection of more than 700 acres in Connecticut. Highlights include:

Treetops Estate, Greenwich and Stamford
After a three-month fundraising campaign, the Treetops estate was permanently protected as open space. The Trust for Public Land purchased 94 acres from International Paper and then transferred it to the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection. Conservation easements were granted to the municipalities of Greenwich and Stamford, Greenwich Land Trust, Stamford Land Conservation Trust, and the Connecticut-American Water Company. International Paper retained ownership of the Treetops mansion and approximately 17 acres of adjoining land. Straddling the Greenwich and Stamford border, the 111-acre Treetops property is one of the largest parcels of open space in Fairfield County. It is home to several rare and declining species, including the Eastern box turtle, spotted salamander, and fairy shrimp and plays a critical role in buffering local drinking water supplies.

Bugai Property, Wallingford
With the help of TPL, the Town of Wallingford permanently protected 53 acres of former farmland on the Durham-Wallingford border. The Bugai property has been a high conservation priority for years because of its location along the Metacomet Ridge, a unique traprock ridge that stretches for 75 miles and passes through 19 of Connecticut’s cities and towns.

King Property, Westbrook
TPL helped the Town of Westbrook permanently protect the 24-acre King property as open space. This land was identified as a priority open space acquisition by the Westbrook Conservation Commission because of its importance to aquifer protection, its connection to an adjacent 10-acre town-owned property, and its location along the Plane Brook, a tributary of the Menunketesuck River.

Quillinan Reservoir, Ansonia
TPL worked with the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection to permanently protect 570 acres in Ansonia as open space. This land lies adjacent to 43 acres that TPL helped the City of Ansonia acquire last year as an addition to the Ansonia Nature and Recreation Center. Because of its size and connection to other open space, the Quillinan Reservoir land is especially valuable for wildlife and recreation, providing an oasis of green in a rapidly developing area.

200th Project Celebration, Boston MA
On September 5, more than 150 guests gathered in Boston to help TPL celebrate the completion of 200 projects in New England. Boston Mayor Thomas Menino and TPL president Will Rogers welcomed guests for an evening of festivities, remembrances, and thanks. Other speakers included TPL regional director Whitney Hatch, Boston Parks Commissioner Justine Liff, TPL Board Members Jamie Hoyte and George Denny, New England advisory board member Kathy Bachman, Jim Robbins of Searsmont, Maine, and David Ogilvy of Greenwich, Connecticut. Speakers highlighted a number of landmark TPL projects throughout the region, including Walden Pond in Massachusetts, Nicatous Lake in Maine, and the Treetops Estate in Connecticut.

The Trust for Public Land is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving land for people to enjoy as parks and open space. Since 1972, TPL has protected more than 1.4 million acres nationwide, including nearly 3,000 acres in Connecticut. The Wall Street Journal’s Smart Money Magazine recently named TPL the nation’s most efficient large conservation charity for the second year in a row, based on the percentage of funds dedicated to programs.