NORTHWEST CORNER — Governor Ned Lamont (D) announced on Friday, June 18 that his administration will be awarding $6.2 million to land trusts and conservacies to protect and preserve open space lands across the state, including $5.5 million to support 29 grants toward the purchase 3,000 acres of land.
The grants are authorized under the state’s Open Space and Watershed Land Acquisition Program and the Urban Green and Community Garden Program, which are administered by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP)
In the Northwest Corner, both the Colebrook Land Conservancy and the Norfolk Land Trust were given grants in order to preserve land.
In Colebrook, the Colebrook Land Conservancy has been awarded $117,600 in order to preserve 146.8 acres of land known as the Sandy Brook Forest Preserve.
According to a press release issued by the state, the undeveloped land is situated on Phelps Flat and Beech Hill Roads.
Most of the property, approximately 120 acres, is core forest and is part of a regional forest block that includes Algonquin State Forest, Colebrook Land Conservancy’s Phelps Research Area, Aton Forest, and Sandisfield State Forest.
In Norfolk, the Norfolk Land Trust has been awarded $328,000 in order to preserve what is known as the Kopp Property.
The 235 piece of land directly adjoins the Norfolk Land Trust’s Hall Meadow Brook and East Branch Headwaters preserves. It is a significant link between other large blocks of protected land such as the Great Mountain Forest and Dennis Hill State Park. According to The Nature Conservancy, the property “has been identified as part of a large resilient landscape in Northwest Connecticut”. It contains 210 acres of core forest including upland and forested wetland habitats. The upland forest includes Central Appalachian Oak-Pine and Mixed Northern Hardwood sub habitats.