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Albemarle County Newsroom
 


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Albemarle’s ACE Program Closes on New Property that Protects 40 Additional Acres
5/29/2012

County Closing in on 7,500 total acres protected in ACE

Albemarle County recently acquired an easement on 40.6 acres near Crozet as part of the County’s Acquisition of Conservation Easements, or ACE program.  With this new acquisition, the County will retire six development rights and establish a streamside buffer along Stockton Creek, a major tributary in the drinking supply watershed of the South Fork Rivanna Reservoir.  The property also fronts on I-64 – a major entrance corridor to Charlottesville.  The County is also approaching protecting a total of 7,500 acres with this acquisition, which brings the total to 7,469 acres under permanent easement in the ACE program.

The ACE program, aimed at preserving open space, natural resources, forests and farmland in Albemarle through county purchase of development rights, was developed in response to accelerating development pressures created by the county’s continuing growth and urbanization. The County Board of Supervisors initiated the measure in 2000 in an effort to protect the county’s rural character and assets from encroaching sprawl.  Albemarle’s ACE program is the only functioning program that specifically benefits landowners of modest means.

The summary of total statistics for the ACE program to date is as follows:

  • 94 Applicants
  • Acquired easements on 40 properties  
  • Protected 7,469 acres
  • Eliminated 452 development lots 
  • Protected over 3,683 acres of “prime” farm and forestland 
  • Protected lands with over 35,000 feet along state roads
  • Protected lands with over 21,000 feet along a scenic highway or entrance corridor 
  • Protected 454 acres of mountaintop
  • Protected over 85,000 linear feet of streamside with buffers
  • 27/40 properties have “tourism” value
  • 11/40 properties in a Rural Historic Districts
  • 24/40 properties adjoin permanently protected land 
  • 14/40 lie in the watershed of a drinking supply reservoir
  • 29/40 are working family farms

“We are very pleased by our continued progress in permanently protecting critical rural area resources and property through ACE,” said County Executive Tom Foley in announcing the most recent closing.  “ACE is a very visible and successful program that brings tangible benefits to all county residents through the protection of natural, historic and scenic resources.”


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