Conservation Efforts Secure 39.86-Acre Pine-Lister Farm Property in East Greenwich

In a collaborative effort between the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) and the Town of East Greenwich, the permanent conservation of the Pine-Lister Farm property has been successfully accomplished. Situated on Tillinghast Road in the Frenchtown neighborhood of East Greenwich, east of Cook’s Corner, this 39.86-acre parcel, boasting over 1,500 feet of frontage along the Hunt River, now joins the ranks of preserved lands dedicated to traditional forest uses, passive public recreation, water quality preservation, and wildlife habitat conservation.

The acquisition, valued at $1,900,000, received a significant boost from a $400,000 grant secured in 2022 through DEM’s competitive Local Open Space Grant Program. This financial support, made possible through Rhode Island voter-approved Green Bonds in 2022 and 2018, played a pivotal role in facilitating the conservation initiative.

DEM Director Terry Gray highlighted the importance of such conservation endeavors, emphasizing their role in enhancing public access to natural spaces, safeguarding water quality, and bolstering the state’s resilience against environmental challenges. This sentiment was echoed by East Greenwich Town Manager Andy Nota, who expressed gratitude towards DEM’s support and underscored the community-driven nature of the conservation effort, made possible through the contributions of East Greenwich taxpayers and the state of Rhode Island.

Under the stewardship of the Town of East Greenwich, the Pine-Lister Farm property will be transformed into a publicly accessible hiking area, complete with parking facilities and a trailhead kiosk off Tillinghast Road. Signage at the trailhead will emphasize the importance of wildlife habitat preservation, while management of the property will adhere to a DEM-approved plan, striking a balance between public recreation and natural heritage conservation.

With East Greenwich experiencing significant population growth over the past decade, the demand for accessible open spaces for outdoor activities has surged. The conversion of the Pine-Lister Farm into a recreational area aligns with the town’s vision for community-driven land conservation and meets the rising need for outdoor exploration opportunities.

The success of this project underscores the effectiveness of DEM’s Green Space programs, which include Outdoor Recreation, Local Open Space, and Recreational Trail grants. These initiatives, funded through voter-approved bond measures, have been instrumental in supporting community-driven land protection and recreational development initiatives across Rhode Island. Such efforts not only contribute to public enjoyment but also play a vital role in environmental health, climate resilience, and economic support, as evidenced by the significant economic impact of outdoor recreation in the state.

Applications for the Local Open Space Grant Program are open to municipalities, land trusts, and nonprofit land conservation organizations, providing avenues for further conservation efforts statewide. With nearly 1,700 acres protected over the past five years through DEM’s grant programs, Rhode Island continues to pave the way for sustainable land management and recreational access for its residents and visitors alike.




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