343-Acre Sourland Purchase to Be Commemorated
Hillsborough may be contributing $500K to county's purchase of tract that will receive ribbon cutting ceremony on Tuesday.
Officials from Somerset County and Hillsborough Township will be holding a ribbon cutting on Tuesday to commemorate the addition of 343 acres to the Sourland Mountain Preserve.
The ceremony will be held at noon at the Hillsborough Golf & Country Club, which is located directly across from the property. A release from the county said the event will be held at the location due to accessibility issues with the tract itself.
According to information released by county officials, the New Jersey Conservation Foundation has secured an option agreement to purchase the property from landowner Bryce Thompson and will transfer the agreement to the county.
Hillsborough may be contributing $500,000 toward the purchase of the tract located in the western part of the township.
The Township Committee approved last week an ordinance on first reading to use the money from Hillsborough’s Open Space Trust Fund to help the county in the purchase.
The Somerset County Freeholders on Sept. 25 approved paying $5,229,000, about $15,000 an acre, to acquire the 348.60 parcel which is made up by 11 lots.
The land, which is made up of several tracts in Hillsborough near the intersection of Wertsville and Montgomery roads, is contiguous to other open space acquired by Somerset County in recent years. A release from county officials said the purchase will encourage the expansion of the Sourlands Preserve to the Hunterdon County border, where many local, county and nonprofit preservation initiatives are currently underway.
Mayor Carl Suraci said at last week's meeting that Hillsborough’s contribution shows that land preservation is a “top priority” in the municipality.
A final vote on the $500,000 contribution is scheduled for Nov. 27.