Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust and Maine Coast Heritage Trust have been working together to conserve Woodward Point, an 87-acre property with over 2 miles of shorefront and plentiful opportunities for recreation. Now, with the help of the Brunswick Town Council, we are closer than ever to achieving our goal of conserving this very special property.
We have both lived in the Brunswick-Topsham area for decades and have chosen to build our careers here, raise our children here, and participate in the civic life of our community through municipal committees and the support of many local nonprofits and community groups. We love this area and are proud to call it home, but we have never been more proud to be members of this community than we were last Thursday evening when the Brunswick Town Council voted unanimously to contribute $150,000 toward the conservation of the 87-acre Woodward Point property. If conserved by Maine Coast Heritage Trust (MCHT) and Brunswick Topsham Land Trust (BTLT), this property will offer 2 miles of shore frontage on the New Meadows River and Woodward Cove in East Brunswick and will create ample opportunities for free outdoor recreation, water access, nature-based education as well as the protection of natural resources including some of Brunswick’s most productive clam flats.
The Times Record, February 1
This vote was a shining example of how our community can unite by working together for common goals—and an example of how the land holds potential to bring us together. Our Town Council (representing diverse political viewpoints) found common ground for the common good.
Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust and Maine Coast Heritage Trust have joined together to conserve Woodward Point and are calling on the town of Brunswick to help preserve the property consisting of 96 acres and 2 miles of shoreline. The Times Record recently published three articles regarding developments in this ongoing project.
See below for previews and click each title to read the full article.
January 15, 2019
The Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust and Maine Coast Heritage Trust are asking the town of Brunswick to help complete the funding for conservation of Woodward Point on the New Meadows River.
The town council will consider the $150,000 request Jan. 24, according to a joint news release from the trusts.
“We’ve seen an incredible outpouring of community support for conserving Woodward Point and opening it to the public,” Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust President Angela Twitchell said in the release. “Funding from the Town would provide a critical lift in our push to the finish line. The project will bring numerous benefits to Town residents and visitors, but only if we can close the funding gap by the end of March.”
I made a fabulous discovery a few weeks ago. On a bright and icy cold day, I bundled up and headed over to Woodward Point in east Brunswick, eager to see for myself what Angela Twitchell, executive director of the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust, had told me was “an amazing place that almost no one knows about.” She was right. The view from the parking area was stunning, and it only got better on my hour-long exploration. Guided by Keith Fletcher from Maine Coast Heritage Trust, I crossed rolling hayfields, passed a stream and a large freshwater pond, poked around in the pine and hardwood forests, and stood in awe at the shimmering shoreline. There weren’t many birds to see on that cold day, but I had a lovely look at a porcupine sequestered high in a White Pine.
For the past two years, Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust (BTLT) and Maine Coast Heritage Trust (MCHT) have been working in partnership to preserve 89 acres on Woodward Point. With two peninsulas and more than 2 miles of shoreline on the New Meadows River, the property is one of the last remaining undeveloped waterfront parcels of its size in southern Maine. It’s also is one of the last large coastal parcels available to conserve in Brunswick. Woodward Point will be a public preserve, available for outdoor recreation, water access, and education. It will also protect an ecologically significant area. Of particular note are its shellfish flats, which are among the most productive in the state.
It’s about promise.
On Jan. 24, Brunswick’s Town Council will consider making the town a partner in the Woodward Point Project. That project nears both goal and deadline for raising the $3.5 million needed to purchase nearly 90 acres of shoreline that encompasses much of a longtime, saltwater cattle farm along the New Meadows River. The farm’s open fields, mixed habitat, good condition and more than two miles of shoreline are unparalleled in southern Maine.
And thanks to the cooperative work of Maine Coast Heritage Trust and Brunswick Topsham Land Trust and their many supporters, we, the public, are within sniffing distance of forever access to this special land.
If these two partners in preservation can raise the 300,000 remaining dollars needed by April 1st, they will be able to complete the purchase of Woodward Point and begin the work of imagining its public future. Which, by land and from the sea, will include you.
Land trust hopes to acquire coastal property by summer
| March 28, 2016 | Front Page | The Times Record
BY DOUGLAS MCINTIRE
Times Record Staff
The Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust is in the process of purchasing
land from the Brunswick Unitarian Universalist Church for conservation and public use. The Land T rust hopes to acquire coastal property by summer
The Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust is hoping to close on about 20 acres of coastal property and prime clam fats by summer.
According to BTLT Executive Director Angela Twitchell, the transaction that began a year ago has been on hold for some time, awaiting funds to be released at the state level. The parcel currently belongs to the Brunswick Unitarian Universalist Church, which had planned to construct a new church on the site before deciding to rebuild at its current Pleasant Street location.
Twitchell said BTLT applied for funding through the Land for Maine’s Future program to cover the $125,000 appraised cost and although they were awarded that funding, it has yet to be dispersed. Twitchell said she spoke with people from the Land for Maine’s Future program last week and they are hopeful Gov. Paul LePage will release the bonds in July.
The purchase contract is set to expire in June, but Twitchell said, if necessary, BTLT will fund the purchase with loans, which will then be repaid with LMF funds.
The property came to the attention of the BTLT through its work with Brunswick Marine Resource Officer Dan Devereaux and others in the community to identify access points for clammers that may be in jeopardy.
Woodard Cove has traditionally been used by clammers and the Unitarian Universalist Church allowed free access to their property. However, a private sale could potentially close access to the clam flats adjacent to the land.
BTLT began talking to the church and in keeping with the church’s mission for stewardship and environmental goals, Twitchell said it appeared to be a win-win for all involved to keep the land conserved and open for hiking, clamming or just enjoying nature.
“Our plan is to have a small trail plus improve access for the shell fishermen and there is already a parking lot of sorts,” Twitchell said, adding that there is a small, scenic high point on the parcel perfect for picnicking.
“I think it does always feel good when there are access points that are in jeopardy as they are up and down the coast, that you can work together, a whole bunch of us in the community and conserve it forever so that’s one less thing to worry about,” Twitchell said.