Thanks to a great many, we have reached the $1 million goal to purchase 22 acres at Exit 4 in Randolph! So when this parcel is added to the 150 acres that the Castanea Foundation has purchased, a total or 172 acres of land will be protected from development and put into agricultural use. What a miraculous effort!
What a remarkable turnaround! It was not long ago when the developer and owner of the property was proposing to building 1,200,000 square feet of mixed use development. Now the property will be protected forever! The outstanding scenic views will be protected, prime agricultural soils will be used for agricultural purposes, and this key step will help build a stronger downtown Randolph.
This didn’t happen by accident. From the beginning it has been a team effort! When the application for the massive development was submitted, the Conservation Law Foundation and the Vermont Natural Resources Council led the opposition in the permitting process. Exit 4 Open Space rallied local support and was a strong voice at the hearings. We, at the Preservation Trust, provided financial support for the expert witnesses.
Then there were several months when CLF, VNRC, and the Preservation Trust participated in a mediation process with the developer. And then more negotiations.
A major breakthrough happened when the Castanea Foundation reached a deal to buy 150 of the 172 acres along Route 66 in Randolph.
And then after more negotiating, the owner Sam Sammis agreed to give the Preservation Trust, CLF, and VNRC two months to purchase the remaining 22 acres.
The Open Space citizens group did the grassroots fundraising, and we then looked for major gifts to reach the $1 million goal.
It was a daunting task. But you did it! We did it! We have Saved Exit 4! We are so grateful to our grassroots contributors and our major donors! Each of the 476 donations was important and critical to our success! Thank you all!