Open Space

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Mercer County Open Space Preservation Program

Mercer County has several programs that are funded through the Mercer County Open Space Preservation Trust Fund Tax, a voter-approved tax that raises funds to preserve open space and farmland. The following is a brief description of the preservation programs for public open space preservation. See "Farmland" for information on the farmland preservation program.

Countywide Regional Open Space

Land that provides regional significant open space opportunities for a large majority of the County’s residents is preserved, maintained and operated by the County. The land must be consistent with the goals and criteria of the Open Space and Recreation Plan. There is a priority list of properties proposed for acquisition in the Plan, and conceptual long-range open space areas such as stream corridors, greenbelts and expansions of existing facilities. The preservation of these lands is reviewed by the Mercer County Open Space Preservation Board. The Board recommends proposed properties to the County administration for acquisition. To make a presentation to the Open Space Preservation Board, please contact the Mercer County Planning Department at 609-989-6545.

Mercer County Open Space Assistance Program

Through municipal and nonprofit initiatives, the County will assist nonprofits and municipalities in acquiring County significant projects. Funding preferences for municipal and nonprofit initiated projects will be based on their consistency with the goals and criteria of the Mercer County Open Space and Recreation Plan, the State Development and Redevelopment Plan, and local master plans. Municipal projects being considered for County assistance that are not included in the Mercer County Open Space and Recreation Plan shall be identified for preservation in the local Master Plan or local Open Space Plan. Nonprofit projects shall be included in the county plan or the local plan. Projects should demonstrate efforts to leverage other governmental and private funds while providing regionally significant open space for the residents of Mercer County.

This program is open to all municipalities in Mercer County and qualified nonprofit conservancies. If you desire to participate in the program, please send the following to MCOSAP c/o Planning Department, 640 S. Broad Street, Trenton, NJ 08650:

1. A brief narrative of the project, including the full acquisition costs, funding strategy and a site location map; and

2. Describe how the project complements or enhances the County Open Space Plan, and the overall regional significance of the project.

More Information

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