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Chester County Press

Conservancy gets $150,000 grant for nature preserve

04/12/2016 12:45PM ● By Richard Gaw
By Richard L. Gaw
Staff Writer

On the heels of two major acquisitions in the past year or so, the Land Conservancy for Southern Chester County (TLC) recently got a $150,000 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) to develop the planned Chandler Mill Preserve and Interpretive Nature Center.
The grant will further connect a grand design that will conserve a sizable chunk of land in southern Chester County. The future preserve, located at the confluence of the Red Clay and Bucktoe creeks, contains Class I woodlands and meadows, specimen trees, rare species of flora and fauna, as well as several historic sites. It is a part of the Audubon Important Bird Area, as well as the site of a longtime Cornell Lab Orinthology study.
Once completed, the nature preserve will become a part of a 12-mile loop trail that forms the beginning of the Red Clay Greenway Trail System, coinciding with last year's donation of 45 acres of preserved land by the Brokaw family.
In 2015, the TLC moved to its new headquarters on Mill Road – a 2,700-square-foot home that traces its beginnings to the 1840s and once served as a bed and breakfast.
Currently being designed by Wayne Simpson Architects, the interpretive nature center – attached to the new headquarters -- is expected to be completed by 2017, and will include maps of area nature preserves, provide historical perspectives and educational opportunities, display taxidermy from the Tyler Arboretum, and feature a floor-to-ceiling window that will provide a sweeping panorama of the Chandler Mill Nature Preserve, which begins directly across Mill Road.
The funding of these projects adds to what will ultimately serve as the vital link to the nature preserve. The historic Chandler Mill Bridge, which was purchased in 2014 by Kennett Township to refurbish the structure as a pedestrian-only bridge, will serve as a steel-and-girder welcome mat to visitors to the preserve, TLC offices and interpretive nature center.
To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, e-mail rgaw@chestercounty.com.

       




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