CAPE ELIZABETH — With the help of local, state and private funding, the Cape Elizabeth Land Trust will acquire nearly 64 acres adjacent to Robinson Woods.
Chris Franklin, executive director, said the land trust’s acquisition will piece together property that will complete a trail system from Portland Headlight to Kettle Cove. It was first proposed in 1974 as part of the original municipal greenbelt plan, he said.
The Town Council on June 13 will consider pledging $350,000 to CELT for the acquisition.
According to a town press release, $150,000 would be funded through the town’s land acquisition fund and $200,000 from a refinanced portion of the municipal debt. CELT would receive the funds when it secures other funding to fully cover the $1.1 million purchase amount. The town would also have to receive a public access easement over the property before the money is released.
Town Manager Mike McGovern said the town and CELT have common goals and have worked together in the past.
“The two entities are totally independent, but this request is a continuation of a tradition,” McGovern said. “CELT asked the town for help and the council will consider the request.”
The property owner is Robinson Family LLC.
Franklin said the land is home to wading birds and waterfowl, New England cottontail and the threatened spotted turtle. It is an environmentally and ecologically important parcel, he said.
“This is such an incredible opportunity,” Franklin said. “It’s great to see it come together.”
Franklin said the land is a perfect companion to the approximately 80 acres in Robinson Woods. He said “Robinson II” is filled with dozens of trees over 200 years old, has 12 acres of fields and five acres of ponds and wetlands.
“As a local land trust we’ve spent a lot of time prioritizing the unprotected land, and now we have an option to buy the property,” he said. “We hope to get support from the town, the state and private foundations.”
The Cape Elizabeth Land Trust will acquire a 63.6-acre parcel next to Robinson Woods, off Shore Road. The acquisition will require funding from the town, the state and private donations.