Greenwich Land Trust and the Town
Greenwich Land Trust acquired the 72.27-acre property, to be known as Converse Brook Preserve, at the corner of Lake Avenue and Old Mill Road from Aquarion Water Company. The acquisition was accomplished through a partnership between Greenwich Land Trust and the Town of Greenwich to buy the property at a below market price from Aquarion Water Company.
With the sale complete, Greenwich Land Trust will own and steward the land and the Town will hold a conservation easement on the property, conserving the land in perpetuity while allowing for public access.
“The extent of public support, from the earliest days when it was made known Aquarion was selling the land, has been terrific. Acquisition of this parcel preserves the rural streetscape, valuable habitat, and provides
increased opportunities for passive recreation,” said Town of Greenwich Director of Environmental Affairs, Patricia Sesto in a release.
The protection of this land enhances an existing greenway totaling over 800 acres of open space.
This greenway strategically links important landscapes which connect critical habitat and increase ecological diversity. The conservation of larger blocks of undeveloped forest land is essential for the protection of wildlife, water quality, and the ecological health of our community.
“The purchase and protection of Converse Brook Preserve has been a true collaborative effort,” said Greenwich Land Trust Board President, Camille Broderick. “I sincerely thank all our GLT supporters who helped us meet our financial commitment to acquire Converse Brook Preserve – land that will be protected in perpetuity.”
Greenwich Land Trust Board Executive Director, Will Kies echoed Broderick’s thanks stating, “This historic opportunity was made entirely possible through the immense generosity and broad support of our community and the strong public-private partnership between the Town and GLT.”
With large undeveloped parcels becoming increasingly rare, conserving those that remain has become vitally important. Converse Brook Preserve will be Greenwich Land Trust’s largest preserve and will be maintained and stewarded as a natural area with public access for activities such as
hiking, birding, and nature walks available to the community.
“We plan to take 6-12 months to evaluate, plan, and implement a thoughtful strategy to conserve the ecological integrity of the land while providing safe recreational activities through an internal network of maintained trails,” said Kies.
First Selectman Fred Camillo praised the partnership.
“Each of the three partners financially stepped up,” Camillo said. “Aquarion agreed to a below market sale and this put the cost of protection within reach for Greenwich Land Trust and the Town.”
Greenwich Land Trust and the Town equally contributed to the $2 million sale price.
Greenwich Land Trust is continuing to raise funds for the long-term stewardship of Converse Brook Preserve.
For more information, visit gltrust.org/converse-brook-preserve.