MONTGOMERY TOWNSHIP COMMITTEE
Mayor Ed Trzaska
Deputy Mayor Rich Smith
|WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2017
Two Key Open Space Tracts Preserved
50 Acres in Total in Belle Mead & Skillman
Montgomery has preserved 50 new acres of land in the Township this month consisting of 15.5 acres of open space in Belle Mead and another 34.5 acres in Skillman. Both parcels were targeted as valuable open space candidates for some time and Township officials are pleased to announce that both purchases have closed.
The 15.5-acre Belle Mead open space tract has been subdivided from the Congregation Kehilat Shalom property located on Belle Mead-Griggstown Road. This is an important parcel of open space which will protect a mature forest and the Pike Brook stream corridor and it also connects other preserved greenways along Pike Brook. Its acquisition also allows for a future pathway connection from the Millers Grove & Pike Run neighborhoods to Montgomery Veterans Park, which could enhance walking access to parkland for many residents in the vicinity.
|click on map for larger view in new window
The 15.5 acre property was acquired for $238,778.26 using funds from the Township's Open Space Trust Fund.
The synagogue will retain 6.1 acres, which includes the area of the current building and parking lot.
Mayor Ed Trzaska commented, "This is a key parcel of remaining forested land along a stream corridor in Belle Mead. We would like to thank the synagogue for being good stewards of the land and for being very conservation-minded and patient throughout this process."
Montgomery Township has also now closed on a 34.5-acre property on the south side of Route 518, near the western border of Montgomery, between Hollow & Spring Hill Roads.
This Skillman property is adjacent to other preserved open space and farmland and to other potential open space parcels. Montgomery is working to create a greenway to keep the viewshed open and rural along its "western gateway" - where motorists, walkers and cyclists enter the Township from Hopewell Township.
"The Township regularly reaches out to property owners about potential preservation, but when we see a 'for sale' sign on a property targeted for preservation in our Open Space Master Plan, we seize the opportunity," said Mayor Ed Trzaska.
The seller of this property was 901 Realty Associates, LLC, who had owned the land since 2001. The owners planned to develop the land but recently listed it for sale. A portion of the land is in the sewer service area and likely could have been used for residential development. Given the development potential, the Township was able to work out a deal for $1.1 million. A 50-50 cost-sharing agreement for the acquisition is pending Somerset County's final approval.
"I am really proud of this deal. The land was pursued by multiple other parties and if we didn't preserve it now, it would have been developed and its viewshed lost forever," added the mayor.
|click on map for larger view in new window
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LIKE OR FOLLOW MONTGOMERY TWP:
Frequently Used Phone Numbers
Main Offices : 908-359-8211
Police (Emergency) : 9-1-1 or 908-359-3222
Recreation : 609-466-3023
Rec Sports Field Hotline: 800-731-8412
Senior Center : 609-466-0846
Food Pantry : 609-466-1054
Dept. of Public Works : 908-874-3144
Kid Connection : 908-359-2111
Please note that email correspondence with the Township is a public record and may be subject to disclosure under the New Jersey Open Public Records Act.