Concord Township property saved from development
● By J. Chambless
The Conservation Fund, in partnership with Mt. Cuba Center and the Brandywine Conservancy, announced yesterday its purchase of the historic Beaver Valley property in Concord Township, Pa.
Thanks to support from Mt. Cuba Center as well as other private contributions, the national environmental organization acquired the 270-acre property from the Woodlawn Trustees for permanent conservation as open space.
“After years of negotiations, The Conservation Fund is elated to finalize the purchase and protection of Beaver Valley, ensuring that everyone can continue to enjoy the beautiful trails, scenic pastures, and wildlife of this vitally important historic property, said Blaine T. Phillips, Jr., senior vice president of The Conservation Fund. “Once again, the steadfast support of Mt. Cuba Center has been crucial in preserving the beautiful landscapes here and across the Brandywine Valley.”
“Mt. Cuba Center is thrilled that The
Conservation Fund brought this deal to fruition, and we are so happy
to be able to participate as the major funder of the project,” said
Ann C. Rose, president of Mt. Cuba Center. “The beauty of this land
speaks for itself as to why it is critical to preserve. The thought
of this property being lost to future generations with the addition
of hundreds of houses was simply unthinkable.”
“It was an honor for the Brandywine Conservancy to help the Mt. Cuba Center, The Conservation Fund, and the various grassroots organizations raise the final dollars necessary to permanently protect this dramatically beautiful and ecologically distinguished property from development,” said Morris Stroud, chairman of the board of trustees for the Brandywine Conservancy & Museum of Art. “I believe posterity will look back in gratitude to the hard work and generosity of all involved."
Located adjacent to First State National Historical Park, the Beaver Valley site is a favorite place for hikers, bikers, horseback riders and runners throughout the region. The property will remain open to the public. The Conservation Fund will work with the National Park Service to explore opportunities to add the Beaver Valley site to the National Historical Park in the future.
The movement to save Beaver Valley began as a true grassroots effort, with tireless support from the Beaver Valley Conservancy, Beaver Valley Preservation Alliance and Save the Valley, as well as from hundreds of individuals in the surrounding communities. These groups worked to plan fundraisers and spread the word to keep this issue at the forefront of the public’s consciousness. The Brandywine Conservancy provided fundraising support to secure the additional funding needed to complete the conservation acquisition. More than 2,000 individuals contributed gifts to meet the fundraising goal.
In addition to public recreational access and landscape preservation, Beaver Valley’s conservation safeguards old-growth forests with 200- to 300-year-old trees, a variety of rare plants and animals, as well as multiple streams that flow into the Brandywine River, supporting water quality for the City of Wilmington and the surrounding communities.