A coalition of groups wants to preserve more than 160 acres of urban wilderness a short distance from downtown Burlington.
The Rock Point and Arms Forest Coalition – which includes Parks Foundation of Burlington, the Lake Champlain Land Trust, the Episcopal Church in Vermont and the City of Burlington – announced the goal of permanently protecting critical shoreline forests and improving public access to 163 acres off the Burlington bike path.
The land. which stretches from Lake Champlain to North Avenue, is owned by the Episcopal Church in Vermont.
“The last piece that was important to us was that the land continued to be available to the people of Burlington and elsewhere to access private property with managed public access,” said Bishop Thomas Ely of the Episcopal Church in Vermont.
Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger said the coalition is less than $50,000 away from its $818,000 goal. The money will be used for conservation, stewardship and trail improvements.
Chris Boget of the Lake Champlain Land Trust said protecting the area, known as Rock Point, “is kind of critical.”
“They’re going to expect a few changes, a few realignments, a few re-routing, but mostly the trails that are here now will be improved,” said Boget.