Thanks to another successful grant application to the Clean Ohio Conservation Fund, Mill Creek MetroParks has expanded its presence into another previously under-served area of Mahoning County and places the MetroParks at more than 5,000 total acres.
The MetroParks has acquired 161 acres, located in Smith Township on W. Western Reserve Road, known as Hawkins Marsh.The MetroParks partnered with West Creek Conservancy in the acquisition of the property that consists of a variety of unique natural habitats including critically important wetlands. The Clean Ohio Conservation Fund provided 74% or $843,800.00 of the $1,143,530.00 total project cost, with the remaining 26% or $299,730 in the form of a bargain sale. Future improvements are currently being planned for the property and due to parameters associated with the Clean Ohio Conservation Fund Program, will be limited to passive recreation opportunities.
“Once again, we are thrilled to be able to announce this most recent acquisition thanks to the dedicated efforts of MetroParks staff, our partners at West Creek Conservancy and financial support from the Clean Ohio Conservation Fund. The acquisition of this unique property is another step forward in the mission of the MetroParks serving the needs of all of Mahoning County.” said Aaron Young, Executive Director.