The Land Trust for Tennessee is excited to announce that three current projects on the Cumberland Plateau were awarded nearly $2 million in funding from the Open Space Institute (OSI) in New York. These projects were chosen for funding because of their unique qualities and ecological importance.
From providing resilient landscapes to protecting the habitats of threatened species, the projects provide important ecological services to our region. As an added bonus to these benefits, the completed projects will all offer opportunities for increased recreation which include hunting, rock climbing, and hiking. Once the projects are completed Tennesseans will be able to enjoy more than 5,000 acres of newly-opened land, increasing the appeal of Tennessee as an ecotourism destination.
Currently, the wheels are turning behind the scenes and we are making great headway- we expect the three projects to close by June 2016! Very soon we will officially announce the details and celebrate the added benefits to the region.
The Land Trust has been working hard on our portion of the project, but this would not have been possible without our wonderful partner organizations: The Conservation Fund, The Access Fund, The Southeastern Climbers Coalition, The State of Tennessee and The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
OSI maintains two funds from which these great projects will receive financial support: the Southern Cumberland Land Protection Fund and the Southeast Resilient Landscapes Initiative. The Southern Cumberland Land Protection Fund was started by the Benwood Foundation, the Lyndhurst Foundation, and the Merck Family Fund. The Southeast Resilient Landscapes Initiative was funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.
Stay tuned for great things to come from The Land Trust for Tennessee and our fantastic partners!