Friday, April 21, 2000
Selectmen approve revised Open Space and Recreation Plan
With many words of appreciation for co-authors Betsy Fell and Susan Emmons, who spent countless hours updating the plan, the selectmen approved the revised Open Space and Recreation Plan on April 11. To continue to qualify for state self-help grants in connection with the purchase of land by the town, the state requires an update of this plan every five years and the previous report expired in September 1999. The town will be invited to adopt the revised report at the May 2 Town Meeting.
The major changes to the report are in the inventory of currently protected land and a new inventory of unprotected parcels of ten acres or more. The report also includes recommendations from other town and regional boards and committees, and specific actions and initiatives that need to be taken by all town boards and committees to carry out the goals set forth in the report.
A general goal stated in the report is to save open space and rural vistas by actively planning to continue to acquire and protect some of the remaining undeveloped parcels. The plan makes the following recommendations:
· Establish a western corridor through acquisitions, conservation restrictions, and the purchase of agricultural development rights. The report specifically recommends establishing a western open space corridor extending from the Sorli property on Westford Street south along West Street.
· Protect the remaining open space along the Concord River through assisted acquisitions and conservation restrictions.
· Protect other open space through acquisitions, conservation restrictions and other methods, with particular emphasis on linkages to existing conservation lands and protection of critical habitats.
· Draw up management and protection plans for the undeveloped portion of the Conant Land, and for the Town Forest and Gage Woodlot, as well as update and complete management plans for all town conservation lands.
· Assess future recreational needs for town-owned land and possible new land acquisitions.
· Intensify town-wide land planning to better manage recreation, conservation and municipal needs as Carlisle's population grows in the coming years.
· Protect additional trails, and develop a system of roadside pedestrian pathways to provide links to trails, playing fields, conservation lands and the public services in the town center.
© 2000 The Carlisle Mosquito