Land Near Shadow Lake Protected (NY)

Westchester County, NY, 4/6/04 — The nonprofit Trust for Public Land announced the permanent protection of 50 acres of land in New York City’s New Croton Reservoir watershed (Westchester County, Town of Yorktown). The purchase from a private landowner puts the land in public hands and expands the protected area around the Teatown Lake Reservation, a nonprofit nature preserve.

The protection of the land will preserve the nine-acre Shadow Lake and surrounding woodlands, wildlife habitat, and wetlands that eventually drain into the New Croton Reservoir, a source of drinking water for New York City and Westchester County. The $1.375 million acquisition was funded by Westchester County through Legacy Program. Teatown Lake Reservation will manage the county-owned site as part of its expanding nature preserve.

Situated in the northern part of Westchester County, adjacent to an existing 800-acre preserve owned and managed by the Teatown Lake Reservation, Inc., this property represents one of the last large tracts of undeveloped open space in the area.

“Teatown is such a fabulous resource for Westchester County residents, and the County Executive and the Board of Legislators clearly acknowledged this by helping to preserve this property,” said Kate Garrett, project manager for the Trust for Public Land, a national nonprofit land conservation organization that negotiated the purchase. “It’s great to know that future visitors to Teatown will now be able to enjoy a hike around Shadow Lake.”

“This is the beginning of a great partnership between the County and the Teatown Lake Reservation,” said County Executive Andy Spano. “It enables us to protect the drinking water supply so critical to residents of Westchester County and New York City and provides a laboratory for the county to work with Teatown on water quality issues. We can also enhance the county trailway system with connections through Teatown thereby expanding opportunities for passive recreation to all county residents.”

Spano noted that properties in this part of the county have been a priority in the county’s open space efforts since the 1960s.

“I’m pleased that the Board of Legislators approved this acquisition,” said County Legislator Mike Kaplowitz. “This is another fine example of how we’re investing in the present as well as the future on behalf of Westchester residents. The purchase of Shadow Lake is important to open space, water protection and our quality of life, and is a most fitting action.”

Planned trails on the site will link up with others at Teatown Lake Reservation-the largest private nature preserve in Westchester County-and make for even more extensive walking trails. Teatown, which includes parts of Yorktown, Cortlandt and New Castle, has provided nature education for more than 40 years to thousands of adults and school children in the lower Hudson Valley.

“The protection of this property exemplifies how partnerships between the public and private sector can really make a difference,” said Gail Abrams, Teatown’s executive director. “We are honored to have been given the responsibility to protect this property for future generations who will benefit from its hiking trails, beautiful vistas and watershed protection.”

The protection of Shadow Lake contributes to a longstanding conservation commitment by the Trust for Public Land and its joint venture partner, the Open Space Institute (OSI) in Westchester County. In 1996, OSI protected 41 acres for the reservation.

“The Open Space Institute lauds the efforts of its joint venture partner, the Trust for Public Land, in securing the preservation of Shadow Lake. This undertaking honors and expands the efforts of our founder, Richard Pough, who decades ago first made Teatown Lake accessible to the public in a landmark negotiation between the private owners and a philanthropic entity. Years later, in 1996, OSI expanded the reservation by acquiring an additional 41 acres that makes this Yorktown preserve one of the largest and most unique natural areas in Westchester County,” said Jennifer Grossman, vice president for land acquisition at the Open Space Institute.

The Open Space Institute ( is a nonprofit land conservation organization that protects significant recreational, environmental, agricultural and historic landscapes. Founded in 1963, OSI has protected more than 90,000 acres in New York State. Through its Northern Forest Protection Fund, OSI has assisted in the protection of close to 875,000 acres in northern NY, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. OSI’s New Jersey Conservation Loan Fund has helped protect over 10,000 acres in the nation’s most densely populated state.

The Trust for Public Land is a national nonprofit land conservation organization that conserves land for people to enjoy as parks, gardens, and other natural places, ensuring livable communities for generations to come. Since its founding in 1972, TPL has helped protect more than 1.6 million acres of land in 45 states, including more than 65,000 acres in New York. The Trust for Public Land depends on the support and generosity of individuals, foundations, and businesses to achieve our land for people mission.

To find out more about Westchester County’s open space acquisition program, visit