Preservation Parks of Delaware County plans to purchase an estimated 722 acres of parks and trails and accelerate the purchase of another 472 acres in Trenton Township if Delaware County voters approve a 10-year, 0.4 mill additional levy for the purpose of acquiring land for future parks and developing and improving park sites.
The levy would develop and open additional parks and trails and improve existing parks for public use and habitat protection at approximately $13 million. This includes having the ability to open parks more quickly such as Orchard Oaks Preserve, undeveloped parkland north of Sunbury in Trenton Township, at McCammon Creek Park in Orange Township, and additional development at Hickory Woods Park in Delaware Township.
“Delaware County is the fastest growing county in Ohio and a fast-paced housing development market is causing valuable land to quickly disappear,” said Tom Curtin, Preservation Parks executive director. “Preservation Parks has been presented with several new opportunities to purchase land for future parks that would help accommodate our increased park visitation— nearly 60% in recent years.”
According to Curtin, the new levy seizes upon strategic geographical land acquisition opportunities that are only available now, given the rate of housing and commercial development in the county. He says these land purchases will preserve land for future generations to enjoy nature.
The geographical areas included in the land acquisition portion of the levy include land along the Olentangy River corridor, Big Walnut Creek corridor, northern Delaware County near the Delaware reservoir, Hoover watershed area, and the Ohio to Erie trail. The cost of land acquisition is estimated at $24 million.
“Residents will have more opportunities to enjoy nature, trails, shelters, public education programming, restrooms and parking closer to home,” Curtin said. “We will continue providing what we’re best known for — being a place of quiet in a busy world.” The park district is providing levy via its website at https://preservationparks.com/news-publications/.
The levy will cost a homeowner $1.16/month each year, per $100,000 in home market value and would provide $3.7 million in funding a year. If passed, collections will begin in 2022.
The current levy costs the owner of a $100,000 home about $2.39/month.