NORTH COVENTRY TOWNSHIP, Pa., May 23 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Pennsylvania will invest $530,000 to protect 49 acres of natural area and improve trail connections in North Coventry Township, Chester County, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Bureau Director Brenda Barrett said today.
"These parcels are at intersections of partially developed trails, and will make critical links in the Schuylkill River Trail system, which travels all the way from the City of Philadelphia, through Pottstown and on to French Creek State Park in Berks County," Barrett said at the Coventry Woods Festival, an event celebrating healthy lands and people in North Coventry Township.
"This regional trail system is a tremendous resource for sustainable economic development, outdoor recreation and connecting people to nature in a very populated area. North Coventry Township is to be congratulated for being a leader in land conservation and protecting resources for the benefit of the community and the region."
The grants are for the following:
- $390,000 to acquire a 39.4 acre property at 1894 St. Peters Road that was formerly part of the Nueva Esperanza Youth Camp. This is the second acquisition that DCNR has supported for purchase of parcels previously owned by the former summer camp. These properties are being added to Coventry Woods Preserve, a North Coventry Township park that now encompasses more than 400 acres, with trails throughout and a connection to French Creek State Park. Coventry Woods is part of the Hopewell Big Woods, the most important mature forested landscape in southeast Pennsylvania. The property is a maturing woodland situated at the headwaters of Pigeon Creek and the Rock Run tributary of French Creek.
- $140,000 to acquire the Gambone Tract at Hanover St. and Kemp Road, which is a key link in developing the Coventry Heights Trail connecting Coventry Woods to Pottstown. This 9.6 acre parcel will facilitate the development of a larger municipal park, connecting to the Schuylkill River Trail at Pottstown and on through to French Creek State Park.
These Community Conservation Partnerships Program grants are supported by the Keystone Fund, a DCNR account generated from a portion of the state's realty transfer tax.
Coventry Woods is an important conservation resource within a special landscape known as the Schuylkill Highlands that stretches through seven counties -- Berks, Bucks, Chester, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh and Montgomery. The vision of the Schuylkill Highlands Conservation Landscape Initiative is to protect what is special in this region by saving high-quality lands and connecting people and communities through a network of trails and gateway communities.
Both of these acquisitions were central to signature goals of the Schuylkill Highlands CLI – protection and stewardship of the significant forested natural resources in the Pennsylvania Highlands and Schuylkill River watershed and creating a network of interconnecting trails from the Schuylkill River Trail through the Hopewell Big Woods.
For more information about DCNR grants, visit www.dcnr.state.pa.us and choose "Find a Grant" or call 717-772-9101.
Media contact: Christina Novak, 717-772-9101
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources