McDADE ADMINISTRATION BUILDING
P.O. BOX 8068
TRENTON, NEW JERSEY 08650-8068
BRIAN M. HUGHES
DATE: Sept. 19, 2016
MEDIA CONTACT: Julie Willmot
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MERCER COUNTY STEPS IN TO HELP PRESERVE
ROBBINSVILLE TRACT EYED FOR HOUSING
TRENTON - Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes and Robbinsville Mayor David Fried announced today that the County plans to provide grants through the County’s Municipal and Non-Profit Grant Program toward the preservation of the 219-acre Edinburg Village property on Robbinsville-Edinburg Road.
Executive Hughes has identified $2 million from the County’s Open Space Trust Fund that would be made available toward the acquisition of this important property. Preservation of this farmed and forested property is a high priority for the Township. The property, which is wooded, farmed and contains a tributary of the Assunpink Creek, provides the opportunity for trail connections from adjacent neighborhoods to the high school and middle school and would be valuable to connect a future County Assunpink Greenway to the high school and middle school and beyond to Robbinsville Town Center.
“The County is pleased to be able to partner with Robbinsville to accomplish the preservation of this property. It is our hope that farming will continue and that valuable bike and pedestrian connections be made to nearby neighborhoods and schools,” Mr. Hughes stated.
Update (9/27/16): Superior Court Judge Paul Innes granted Washington Woods LLC temporary "injunctive relief" that allows work to continue on the privately-owned property in order to help satisfy the owner's DEP permit. Robbinsville Township still intends to seek fair appraisal value for the purpose of purchasing and preserving the 220 acre parcel, which has been on its Open Space Map since 2008. A referendum to increase the Open Space Tax 1.5 cents for every $100 of assessed value - or approximately $55 per household - will appear on the November 8 election ballot and will help the Township with the purchase.
“We are extremely grateful that County Executive Hughes has stepped forward to partner with Robbinsville Township in order to help purchase and preserve this key parcel of land through the Open Space Trust Fund,’’ Mayor Fried said. “County Executive Hughes shares our appreciation for open space, and respects our unwavering responsibility to do what is in the best interests of our residents.”
Preservation of this 219-acre property takes on added significance due to its location. It is adjacent to one of the County’s agriculture project areas and is part of a swath of preserved farmland at the intersection of Robbinsville and West Windsor townships. It is adjacent to land preserved by West Windsor to the west and across the street from a 153-acre farm preserved by Robbinsville.