Palmer Land Trust announces success on Sec. 16 easement

       The final piece in the purchase of Section 16 fell into place this week when the Palmer Land Trust announced it has succeeded in raising the necessary $40,000 to place a permanent conservation easement on the 640-acre open space property above western Colorado Springs.
       The easement “will guarantee that the property is protected and open to the public-FOREVER-regardless of who owns it,” the Land Trust website states.
       The Section 16 purchase itself is to be finalized by the City of Colorado Springs in December, with the $3.8 million cost coming chiefly from the city's Trails, Open Space and Parks (TOPS) tax. Leased for recreational use by the city or county for many years, Section 16 touches Pike National Forest, Bear Creek Park and the White Acres and Red Rock Canyon open-space parcels.
       The non-profit Land Trust announced plans for the easement in September, when City Council approved the Section 16 purchase plan. A $20,000 challenge grant had just come forward, and Palmer has been seeking donations to match that amount in recent weeks. “Palmer had outstanding support for the project from local community members, with over 100 individuals and organizations contributing,” the website states.

Westside Pioneer/press release