Private 110-Acre Martha Property in Marin County  Is One Step Closer to Becoming Public Open Space

After 30 years of effort, the Martha Property is now under contract for protection as public open space.

June 16, 2022
Marin County, Calif.

Trust for Public Land (TPL) is proud to announce that it has entered into an historic agreement with the Martha Co. to acquire the 110-acre Easton Point/Martha Property in Tiburon. The parties executed an Option to Purchase Agreement on June 14, 2022.  

“We are thrilled to announce this momentous day for the Martha property.  We look forward to working in common cause with the community and family landowners to forever protect this special place as public open space for Marin County residents, recreators, and visitors,” said Guillermo Rodriguez, California State Director and Vice President-Pacific Region for Trust for Public Land. “This new acreage will expand and connect Old St. Hilary’s Open Space Preserve and the Tiburon Uplands Preserve to the San Francisco Bay, allowing for incredible scenery, hiking and one of the best panoramic views of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco Bay in the entire region. We are deeply grateful to the family for agreeing to sell this property and to the community for prioritizing its protection.”   

This agreement provides a once-in-lifetime opportunity to permanently protect the Martha Property for current and future generations.  Acquisition of this pristine, undeveloped ridgetop property will expand and connect Old St. Hilary’s Open Space Preserve and the Tiburon Uplands Preserve to the San Francisco Bay, creating a greatly expanded regional conservation preserve for community and wildlife.    

The agreement gives TPL until summer 2024 to purchase the property for $42.1 million.  Over the next 24 months, TPL will work closely with local partners, including Tiburon Open Space, to secure the public and private funds necessary to complete the purchase.  A critical first step will be passage of a Mello-Roos bond in November 2022.  Tiburon and Belvedere property owners within the Mello-Roos District will be asked to vote, on what is considered to be a modest increase, to their current open space tax.  A significant portion of acquisition funds – up to $15 million - are expected to come from private philanthropic donations.    

Once funding is secured and the property is acquired, TPL will transfer the Martha Property to Marin County Parks and Open Space District to own and steward as public open space.  Local partners envision a preserve that enhances recreational and wildlife corridors, completes trail connections, and expands foraging and habitat opportunities for the California red-legged frog, Northern Harrier and Loggerhead Shrike, among other species. Trust for Public Land looks forward to working with the family and community partners to achieve this community vision of furthering open space and recreation, on the Tiburon Peninsula, that offers world-class scenery and panorama views of San Francisco and the Bay Area.  

TPL is deeply grateful to the Martha Co. for working in good faith to arrive at a fair purchase price that is substantially below asking price.  Owned by the same family for over 100 years, the Martha property is beloved by many, and its protection has been an important goal for local conservationists for decades.  This moment presents a rare opportunity to work together to create a lasting legacy for future generations. 

Supporters of the project include Tiburon Mayor John Welner, Tiburon Open Space President Jerry Riessen; Marin Open Space Board Chair Bill Long, and San Francisco State University’s Ocean and Estuary Science Center Director Dr. Katharyn Boyer, among others.  

###  

About Trust for Public Land 

Trust for Public Land (TPL) is a national nonprofit that works to connect everyone to the benefits and joys of the outdoors. As a leader in equitable access to the outdoors, TPL works with communities to create parks and protect public land where they are needed most. Since 1972, TPL has protected more than 3 million acres of public land, created more than 5,000 parks, trails, schoolyards, and iconic outdoor places, raised $84 billion in public funding for parks and public lands, and connected more than 9 million people to the outdoors. To learn more, visit tpl.org