10 acres acquired on Weweantic River to expand conservation, recreation, and affordable housing in Wareham

A recently completed land conservation project in Wareham is bringing together three parts of the Community Preservation Act – land conservation, outdoor recreation, and affordable housing – to create new places that will benefit Wareham residents.

protected forest and cranberry bogs near the Weweantic River in Wareham

The protected land includes an old cranberry bog and a forest of pine and hardwoods, which will eventually open to the public with a trail that connects to nearby Westgate Conservation Area.

The Community Preservation Act (CPA) allows communities to create a dedicated local fund to conserve natural areas, improve outdoor recreation, protect historic places, and increase affordable housing options. Community preservation funds have been used in nearly every community around Buzzards Bay to purchase and permanently preserve thousands of acres of land and open them to the public. Rochester is the only town in the Buzzards Bay region that has not adopted CPA.

For this project, CPA funds were used to purchase 10 acres on the Weweantic River in West Wareham. The land includes 1,300 feet of riverbank along the river, as well as mixed pine/hardwood forest, an abandoned cranberry bog, and a four-unit apartment building.

Under the deal developed and managed by the Coalition, the Wareham Conservation Commission will own 8.7 acres of this land, and the Coalition will hold a conservation restriction to ensure it is protected forever. Working together with the town, we will create and open a trail along the river that connects this property to neighboring Westgate Conservation Area. Brockton-based Father Bill’s & MainSpring will own the apartment building on the remaining 1.5 acres to provide affordable housing.

This collaborative project is one piece of a larger effort to protect a corridor of land along the Weweantic River, Buzzards Bay’s largest freshwater river. These lands protect clean water in the river and habitat for fish and wildlife, including species like migratory river herring and threatened eastern box turtles.

Additional project partners included the Wareham Land Trust, the Buzzards Bay National Estuary Program, and MassHousing.

Category: On the Land

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Working to Save Buzzards Bay

The Buzzards Bay Coalition is a membership-supported organization dedicated to improving the health of the Buzzards Bay ecosystem for all through education, conservation, research, and advocacy.

We work to protect clean water on the Bay and on the land: