The Center is working with residents of Hanover, NH, and partners the Trust for Public Land and the Hanover Conservancy to create a Community Forest that will protect 250 acres containing the headwaters of Mink Brook, mature forests and a scenic hay field.
Center Program Director Julie Renaud Evans will help prepare community members for owning and managing the 250 acres as a town resource. “I’ll will help residents identify management and recreational priorities to balance sustainable forestry with ecological protection and development of new trails and recreation opportunities,” said Renaud Evans.
Hanover is a town of about 11,000 people, well known as the home of Dartmouth College and Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, though the surrounding landscape is rural. The Mink Brook Community Forest project will stave off development that has threatened the property and help conserve the rural character close to downtown.
We anticipate the property will provide new trails for walking, biking and cross-country skiing, as well as a buffer to keep development away from the Appalachian Trail, which runs nearby. The town has identified conserving the property as part of its open space plan to create a greenway around the downtown area.
“For many towns, managing a Community Forest is a new way of working, but I am always so impressed with the energy and commitment of volunteers on these projects,” said Renaud Evans. “We’ll be working together to figure out how to do this intensive planning work while maintaining physical distance and keeping everyone healthy,” she said.