FRAMINGHAM – Sudbury Valley Trustees (SVT) and the City of Framingham are in the final weeks of the effort to protect the 52-acre Wayside Forest in the northern part of Framingham.
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has offered a generous $217,600 grant for the project to the City of Framingham, provided the sale closes by June 30.
Wayside Forest is entirely wooded, with vernal pools and wetlands in the lower elevations and a mix of mature tree species in the upper elevations. Because it provides quality habitat for wildlife, the property is ideal for conservation. In addition, it is adjacent to other protected lands and can be added to an existing trail network.
Wayside Forest consists of two parcels with a market value of approximately $800,000.
The landowners, George and DD Harrington, are donating one parcel, and the Trustees has been raising money to purchase the other parcel and to fund the long-term care of the property.
Many private donors have contributed to the fundraising effort, but $25,000 is still needed by June 30 to reach the fundraising goal.
If the effort is successful, the land will become an Sudbury Valley Trustee reservation, and the City will hold a conservation restriction over it.
Trustees will improve public access with a small parking area and will maintain public trails for hiking, birding, horseback riding, and cross-country skiing.
Sudbury Valley Trustees is a nonprofit, regional land trust, protecting and caring for land and wildlife habitat in 36 communities surrounding the Concord, Assabet,
and Sudbury Rivers.
More information about the Wayside Forest project can be found at www.svtweb.org\waysideforest.