Partnership funds and facilitates the purchase of three properties
Jacksonville, Fla., Nov. 19, 2019 – North Florida Land Trust and the City of Fernandina Beach have closed on deals to acquire three properties that will be used as parkland and natural open space within the city limits. The nonprofit land conservation organization served as the facilitator and partner of the city to purchase two properties located on North 11th Street near downtown
Fernandina Beach and one property that will be added to Egans Creek Greenway. As part of the agreement with the City, NFLT provided 50 percent of the funds needed to purchase the properties.
“These properties are beautiful natural spaces that will be a great passive park for the people of Amelia Island, the City of Fernandina and for visitors to the city,” said Jim McCarthy, president of NFLT. “While we have funded half of the acquisitions, we are looking for businesses, foundations, individuals or other entities to help us recoup our costs to conserve these lands.”
NFLT negotiated with an individual to purchase 3.3 acres along Citrona Drive next to the Amelia Bluff development for $250,000. They also negotiated on the city’s behalf to acquire 5.9 acres on North 11th Street from the Episcopal Diocese of Florida for $340,000 and the second property of 1.58 acres from an individual for $25,000. The negotiated contracts and purchase prices were approved by the Fernandina Beach City Commission.
“The City of Fernandina Beach is excited to work with the North Florida Land Trust in an effort to preserve the natural beauty of the community,” said Fernandina Beach City Manager Dale Martin. “As development pressures increase, it is critical to protect what originally attracted many of us to this wonderful city: great live oaks, natural wetlands, and wide beaches. The partnership between the City of Fernandina Beach and the North Florida Land Trust will provide for natural benefits for generations to come.”
NFLT covered the cost of the due diligence needed to complete the acquisitions which were factored into the total costs. The city paid half the total cost and NFLT covered the remaining 50 percent. The properties will be owned by the City of Fernandina Beach and NFLT will reserve the right to take ownership of the property if they are not used as a park or preserve.
This acquisition was made possible in part to the donations received for the Amelia Forever Campaign. Donors who contributed to the fund include Sally and Tony Perez, the Susan E. Laird Revocable Living Trust, Connie and Ken McDaniel, and Susan and Stephen Kaye. The Amelia Forever Campaign is focused on raising money for conservation on Amelia Island. For more information, visit Amelia Forever Campaign or contact Megan Mangiaracino at mmangiaracino@NFLT.org or call (904) 479-1967.
These three parcels are the first in NFLT’s Campaign for Fernandina Beach and Amelia Island. The nonprofit is anticipating future conservation acquisitions in the region and will continue to work with the city and the surrounding community to identify land for preservation.
About North Florida Land Trust
North Florida Land Trust is a not-for-profit organization that seeks to protect the natural resources, historic places and working lands (farms and ranches) throughout north Florida. Founded in 1999, NFLT has preserved tens of thousands of acres of land through donation or purchase of land as well as conservation easements. NFLT is funded largely by private and corporate contributions and works closely with willing landowners and public agencies at all levels of government, not-for-profit partners, and foundations. For more information, visit nflt.org.