Conserving Long Islands Working Farms and Natural Lands

Community Projects

Peconic Land Trust often works with individuals to raise funds necessary to protect land that has significant conservation value and scenic or historic importance to a community. These fundraising collaborations with private donors, often in partnership with a local municipality that provides matching funds, leverages limited public monies for conservation. In many cases, the land is under serious threat of development and time is the critical ingredient. Sometimes, in order to take the property off the market, it is necessary for the Trust to tap its “revolving fund,” a source of emergency funding that has been underwritten by the Peter Jay Sharp Foundation. This “loan” is eventually paid back to the fund through the sale of development rights and successful fundraising so that working capital will be available for future conservation emergencies.

Recent Community Projects are: 

The following are examples of Community Projects that the Peconic Land Trust has accomplished. For more information about Community Projects, please contact Rebecca A. Chapman, Vice President of Philanthropy, at 631.283.3195, ext. 40.


Conklin Farmland

The Trust worked with the community to raise more than $1.8 million to help fund the purchase of the agricultural and facade easements on the Conklin family’s farmstead, including an 18th-century house and barn. The Town contributed an additional $1 million. Located on the corner of Sayre's Path and Wainscott Road, the three-acre site is a special part of the community’s history and rural character. (2006)

White Bridge Lane Farmland

The Town of Southampton and the Peconic Land Trust joined forces to preserve this 9-acre farmland parcel on Sagaponack Lake in Sagaponack. The 9-acre parcel had been subdivided by the Whites into three (3) residential lots. These lots abut a 21-acre farm parcel, also owned by the Whites, that was previously preserved by the Town. The purchase price for the development rights on the 9 acres was $6.44 million. Of that amount, the Town of Southampton contributed $5 million from its Community Preservation Fund. PLT assisted with an aggressive fundraising campaign which raised the remaining $1.44 million. (2006)

Halsey Cobb Road Farmland

The Halsey family contacted Peconic Land Trust in 2000 to express their desire to preserve two one-acre farm parcels on Cobb Road in Water Mill. Conserving these two building lots was important not only for the working farm, but for the bucolic view of the farmland provided to passersby. The Trust raised $550,000 through the generosity of 65 neighbors, in addition to securing $1,250,000 in Town of Southampton Community Preservation Funds and facilitated the Town’s purchase of the development rights from these two parcels. (2005)

Blair Preserve

The Trust acquired the 4.9 acre Blair Preserve, located off Bridge Lane in Sagaponack, through a bargain sale from the property owner. The Trust raised the funds for the acquisition of the property through donations by Sagaponack neighbors. The property is less than 100 feet from Sagaponack Lake and is an open meadow. (2006)

Babinski Farm

A 24-acre working farm in Wainscott off Beach Lane was protected as a result of the generosity of more than 110 neighbors who raised $2 million towards the Town of East Hampton’s purchase of development rights from the Babinski family at a bargain sale. The property is nearly 100% prime agricultural soils that have sustained the Babinski family and surrounding community for decades with the various vegetables grown there. (2005)

Harper Preserve at Kenney’s Beach

Peconic Land Trust purchased a 0.67-acre parcel on Lake Drive in the Kenney’s Beach/Great Pond Wetland Area from Peter F. Harper with donations from approximately 80 community residents and supporters, as well as $56,000 from the Town of Southold. As part of the plan, the Town now holds a conservation easement on the property. This successful grass roots effort encouraged the Suffolk County legislature to authorize a Planning Steps resolution to aid in the efforts of protecting the remaining parcels in the approximately 10-acre area. (2005)

Piqui Preserve

Just under one acre on the Long Island Sound in Peconic, this site was protected through the donations from community members. Bounded on the westerly side by Suffolk County-owned Goldsmith Inlet Park, its prominent feature is an environmentally-sensitive “double dune.” The Trust expects to assist in the protection of the northerly portion of five lots that make up this "double dune" area by writing scenic conservation easements on behalf of the Town of Southold. (2003)

Parsons Sylvan Preserve

With the help of four conservation-minded neighbors, the Trust protected a woodland parcel on Big Fresh Pond, reducing the allowable density in the area. The property contains watershed forest and freshwater wetlands and is part of the larger Red Maple Black Tupelo Swamp. An example of successful public/private conservation partnership, this project was also funded with the proceeds of the Trust's sale of development rights to the Town of Southampton. (2000)

Pearsall Preserve

Working with conservation-minded landowners, the Trust protected a one-acre parcel in Bridgehampton through the sale of a conservation easement to the Town of Southampton. The protected property provides a wildlife habitat as well as a natural drainage area for surrounding land. The Pearsall Preserve will maintain the integrity and special character of this wetland resource and help to retain the rural character of the community. (1999)

Town Lane Preserve

The Trust assisted in the planning and implementation of a limited development project with the Bistrian family that resulted in the protection of 21 acres of farmland in Amagansett. The farmland was purchased by the Trust in 1990 simultaneous to a purchase of development rights by East Hampton Town that confined future development to 4 acres on the site. The funds for the Trust purchase were raised entirely through the generosity of local neighbors. (1990)

Quantuck Beach Club Easement

The Peconic Land Trust purchased a conservation easement on a 1-acre parcel in Westhampton Beach from Elsa M. Luker, Louise M. Dunbar, and Walter E. Morgan, III at a bargain sale price with funds raised from individual donors. Located on the bay side of Dune Road, the site consists of upland and tidal wetlands. Simultaneously, the property, subject to the conservation easement, was sold to Quantuck Beach Club. (1996)

Smith Corner Preserve

The Trust purchased 20 acres of farmland and freshwater wetlands along Sagg Pond in Sagaponack for approximately $1.2 million. The funds necessary to acquire this land were raised entirely through the generosity of local neighbors. (1989)

Nature's Preserve

The Trust acquired one acre of freshwater wetlands and upland on Big Fresh Pond from Mr. and Mrs. Eduardo Schijman through a "bargain sale." With the assistance of Kurt Billing and his family, almost all of the funds necessary to complete this project ($85,000) were raised from neighbors. The Trust renamed the Preserve in 2009 (formerly known as Big Fresh Pond Preserve) in honor of the late Kurt Billing. (1986)

Southold Town Green

The Trust successfully acquired a half-acre parcel of commercial property in the hamlet of Southold through a "bargain sale." The funds necessary to complete this project ($200,000) were provided by George Wells in memory of Lillian Howell. The property was conveyed to the Town of Southold in 1988, and is now a beautiful public "Green" enjoyed by area residents. (1986)