Antioch College says that a new conservation land easement will ensure that Glen Helen near Yellow Springs will be forever preserved and open to the public.
It's first of two phases designed to protect the popular recreational destination. WYSO's Licensee, Antioch University was a co-granter on the easement. Both the University and College worked with the Trust for Public Land to complete the deal.
Nick Boutis with Antioch College is Director of the Glen Helen Ecology Institute. He says protecting the Glen has been a priority for decades.
"I think what it took was a harmonic convergence of sorts," says Boutis. "Of all of the organizations that care about the Glen, recognizing that there was a real threat for the Glen should Antioch College or Antioch University no longer be able to be the owner and the holder of the Glen. And nobody wanted to see this place subdivided and developed, and so there was a willingness to kind of act on that sacred trust and to move forward with a level of protection that we've never been able to achieve."
Funding for this $1.63 million easement included $1.2 million from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, $200,000 from the Dayton Foundation, and more than $200,000 from the Clean Ohio Fund.
Boutis says a second easement, covering the remaining acreage in the Glen is expected to be completed by mid-year. The sales of the two easements will help support the land stewardship and environmental learning programs of the Glen Helen Ecology Institute.