A fundraising campaign is underway to purchase and preserve 100 acres adjacent to the Hansville Greenway to protect it from development.
Great Peninsula Conservancy, the Hansville Greenway Association and community members are leading the project, which provides an opportunity to purchase the land to ensure the permanent preservation of wildlife habitat, open space and reduce development pressure, according to the GPC’s website.
“It will allow restoration of the land, connect neighborhoods, expand hiking opportunities and help protect the environment for future generations,” the website states. “This is your chance to make a difference and save 100 acres. Due to development pressure, the opportunity to protect this land won’t come along again.”
The campaign seeks to raise $2.15 million by Jan. 15, 2022. The funds would cover the land purchase, administrative costs, a stewardship reserve to ensure long-term care of the property, and funds to begin improving the habitat quality of the land.
The campaign involves two phases. Phase 1 has been completed, raising 84% of the funds ($1.8 million) from community pledges Nov. 17.
Phase 2 needs to be completed by Jan. 15 to secure the remaining $350,000 to complete the purchase. The expected closing date is Jan. 31.
Project details include:
• Acquire 100 acres to extend protection of natural areas and provide additional wildlife corridors west of the Hansville Greenway.
• Enhance plantings using a variety of native trees and wetland vegetation to create natural forest and wetland areas to be enjoyed by future generations.
• Extend the continuous recreational Hansville Greenway trail system for people to use in the future.
• Involve the Hansville community in stewardship to extend public areas, connect neighborhoods and reduce development pressure.
Once purchased, the property will be owned by GPC with stewardship support by HGA and the community. Additional trails will be part of the Hansville Greenway network, and Kitsap County is supportive of the acquisition. Since the land was previously logged and replanted with Douglas fir, the partners will prioritize a restoration and replanting plan.
For restoration and maintenance on the property, $125,000 will be used which will be overseen by GPC. The purpose of the funding is to cover some of the hard costs of restoring and maintaining the property in the future. The major point of entry will remain the Buck Lake access, although there is room for a few cars at the end of Madrona and Ponderosa boulevards along with Benchmark Avenue. Multipurpose uses of the land include hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. The only restriction is motorized vehicles.
The FAQ sheet on GPC’s website states that if the land isn’t bought right now, it will likely be sold to another developer or will be developed by Disney and Associates. It was originally owned by Pope & Talbot and they sold it to a developer that went bankrupt in 2008. It was then sold to a second developer that sold it to a private investor. When that investor died in early 2020 it was sold to the current owner Bob Disney in an estate sale.
If you want to donate or learn more about the project, visit greatpeninsula.org under the featured projects tab.