If you have ever driven past 659 Washington Road in Rye, you have most likely have had the sense of going back to our historical roots as you enjoyed the views of the beautiful stone walls, fields, and forest!
The Southeast Land Trust of New Hampshire is working with the Town of Rye to permanently protect these 48 acres on Washington Road through the purchase of a conservation easement. The protection of this unique property will prohibit development and protect the natural resources of the property and the watershed. The property will remain in private ownership and the conservation easement will remain in place even if the land is sold in the future.
In 2012, the Southeast Land Trust of NH teamed up with the Town of Rye to permanently protect this scenic property, the total cost of which is $750,000. The Rye Conservation Commission has led the way with a generous commitment of $725,000 from the Town's conservation bond. Neighbors contributed the remaining $25,000 to cover the Land Trust's associated transaction costs and the long-term stewardship of this easement.
• The Washington Road property is comprised of 48+/- acres off of Washington Road and includes hundreds of feet on both sides of Berry’s Brook. Berry's Brook is a unique coastal ecosystem comprised of a 6.2 mile brook, freshwater wetlands, forested uplands, open grasslands, an estuary, and scenic tidal marshland.
• The property’s open fields bounded by stone walls provide a scenic reminder of our rural landscape at the turn of the century, when much of Rye and the region was pasture for sheep and other animals.
• 30 acres overlay a strafied drift aquifer with a high capacity for public drinking water.
• Nearly the entire property is recognized by the New Hampshire Wildlife Action Plan as being a supporting landscape for core wildlife habitat.
• The property contains 31 acres of productive agricultural soils which are important for ensuring the land remains available for locally grown foods.
• The NH Natural Heritage Bureau has identified threatened and endangered plant and wildlife species known within 1 mile of the Lium property. The spotted turtle (threatened) is a likely visitor and inhabitant of the property.
• The property lies adjacent to more than 120 acres of existing conservation land, enhancing and extending a greenway along this portion of Berry’s Brook.