Collaboration Leads to Landmark Land Conservation

Arizona has taken a notable step forward towards preserving its natural beauty for generations to come through the power of collaboration. The Town of Cave Creek, Maricopa County, and the Desert Foothills Land Trust are proud to announce the conservation of nearly 30 acres of critical land near the trailhead of the Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area, a special part of the state’s pristine landscape.

For several years, the Town of Cave Creek, Maricopa County, and Desert Foothills Land Trust (DFLT) have been working together to identify and protect lands that surround or are adjacent to the Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area. The recent listing of a critical property for sale presented an opportunity to protect the land forever. Thanks to a patient but steadfast partnership, the land has now been protected. The Land Trust negotiated the purchase and the Town and County provided the funds for it. The Town and County now own the land, and DFLT holds a conservation easement, ensuring its protection in perpetuity.

“The protection of this property was one of our highest priorities,” said Vicki Preston, President & CEO of Desert Foothills Land Trust. “The development of several homes and driveways adjacent to the trailhead would have had a detrimental impact on the conservation success of the area.” She added that “this was a very difficult deal, with many moving parts, none of which could have been accomplished alone. Having the expertise of so many was invaluable, and the true want for this to happen by all of us is what pushed it over the finish line.” Preston has a strong personal connection to this project, sharing that “this was a huge win for all of us, and I’m personally proud of this deal.”

“The County is thrilled to have acquired this parcel of land near Spur Cross Ranch, which enlarges the footprint of the Conservation Area,” expressed District 2 Supervisor Thomas Galvin. “I appreciate all the hard work that the Desert Foothills Land Trust and R.J. Cardin’s team at Parks put into this effort to ensure that the land will be protected for future generations.” District 3 Supervisor Bill Gates expressed his excitement about the acquisition, stating that “had it not been for our great partnerships with the Town of Cave Creek and Desert Foothills Land Trust, Inc., this transaction may not have been possible.”

Luke Kautzman, Development Services Director for the Town of Cave Creek, stated that “Preservation was, is, and will be into the future, the cornerstone of Cave Creek’s image.” With the protection of this 30-acre property, there are now over 9,701 acres of dedicated open space in the Town of Cave Creek, enhancing the success of conservation efforts even further.

The successful protection of this property for future generations is a testament to the power of collaboration between the Town of Cave Creek, Maricopa County, and the Desert Foothills Land Trust. The Land Trust connects people to nature through land acquisition and long-term stewardship, as well as events and activities that allow the community to use and enjoy the lands that have been protected. Future generations will benefit from this incredible legacy of conserved land!

Desert Foothills Land Trust works with landowners, communities, and partners to protect the most special and important natural areas in the Arizona communities of Carefree, Cave Creek, North Scottsdale, North Phoenix, Anthem, Desert Hills, and New River. The Land Trust has permanently protected over 1,000 acres on 28 preserves, many of which are open to the public for exploration and passive recreation. In 2010, the Land Trust was awarded accredited status by the national Land Trust Accreditation Commission and was recently awarded renewed Accreditation this year – a mark of distinction in the land trust community.

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