MA Land Conservation Achievements for 2001
Boston, MA: Today, the Massachusetts office of the Trust for Public Land (TPL), a national nonprofit organization, announced its conservation achievements in the year 2001: the protection of nearly 400 acres in Massachusetts. Highlights include:
Community Preservation Act (CPA)
Since CPA became law in Massachusetts last December, 35 communities – from the North Shore to the Connecticut River Valley and the island of Nantucket – have voted to adopt the measure. TPL advocated for passage of the Act and is now working with municipalities and community groups to help implement it locally. For more information, visit www.tpl.org/CPA.
Carter Hill, North Andover
Last spring, the town of North Andover approved the first expenditure of funds raised under the Community Preservation Act, purchasing 27-acre Carter Hill with assistance from TPL and the State’s Self Help Program. Located adjacent to the Barker Dairy Farm, the property is a scenic mix of hay fields and woodlands. The land drains directly into Lake Cochichewick, which is the sole source of drinking water for North Andover and the largest body of fresh water in Essex County.
Cranberry Hill Farm, West Tisbury
TPL helped the Martha’s Vineyard Land Bank Commission protect the 77-acre Cranberry Hill Farm in West Tisbury. The property consists of meadow and forestland, and abuts the Land Bank Commission’s Wompesket Reserves and Duarte’s Pond, as well as The Nature Conservancy’s Black Water Pond preserve. The alternating flooding and drought cycles that characterize coastal plain ponds provide habitat for a number globally rare and highly endangered species, including Plymouth Gentian, Slender Marsh Pink, and several species of dragonflies and damselflies.
Hunsley Hills, Rowley
TPL helped the Town of Rowley protect the 104-acre Hunsley Hills property as permanent open space. The property drains directly into the aquifer recharge area for one of two public wells that serve more than 90 percent of Rowley residents. It also drains through tributaries to the Parker River and the Parker River/Essex Bay Area of Critical Environmental Concern. Whereas development of Hunsley Hills would have threatened drinking water quality, the property’s permanent protection will help safeguard Rowley’s drinking water and the Parker River by limiting runoff of fertilizers, pesticides, and other chemicals.
Surf Park, Gloucester and Manchester-by-the-Sea
TPL is currently working with local residents and officials to transform this 2-acre abandoned commercial lot into a public park. Site of the former Surf Restaurant, the property lies along Magnolia Avenue in Gloucester and Raymond Street in Manchester and offers scenic views of Kettle Cove. Project partners include the Trust for Public Land, Gray Beach Neighborhood Association, Magnolia Neighborhood Association, Town of Manchester, and City of Gloucester.
Watt Farm, Harvard
TPL, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Town of Harvard, and Harvard Conservation Trust announced the addition of 112 acres on Still River Depot Road in Harvard to the Oxbow National Wildlife Refuge. Thanks to the hard work of Senators Ted Kennedy and John Kerry and Congressman Martin Meehan, last year Congress allocated funding for this acquisition from the Land and Water Conservation Fund. This scenic gateway to the Refuge provides breeding habitat for several declining species of grassland-nesting birds.
White Wharf, Rockport
TPL transfered 31,990 square foot wharf to the Town of Rockport for permanent protection. The property lies across the Old Harbor from Lumber Wharf and Middle Wharf, which are already owned by the Town of Rockport. The property includes a 220 ft. granite wharf, a marina with 30 slips, and a small, undeveloped open lot.
Wylde Woods, Dover
TPL helped the Town of Dover protect Wylde Woods, a critical link in an 800-acre greenway of conservation land. This 62-acre property supports a number of regionally rare species, including the spotted salamander and Eastern box turtle. Because of its frontage on Centre Street, Wylde Woods will provide greatly improved public access to the corridor’s existing trail system for hiking, cross-country skiing, and horseback riding.
200th Project Celebration, Boston
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 5,000 acres in Massachusetts. 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. For more information, visit www.tpl.org