Dear Friends and Neighbors,
I am delighted to share with you that the conservation easement to protect the 90-acre campus of the Carey Institute in Rensselaerville is now complete. The easement will be administered by Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy. The W.P. Carey Foundation, Inc. has joined in the execution of the easement.
A conservation easement is “a voluntary, legal agreement that protects the natural resources of a parcel of land by restricting future land use and/or development on the property in perpetuity.” This easement supports conservation aims of the New York State Constitution, NYS Environmental Law, and the Town of Rensselaerville Comprehensive Plan.
The specific purpose of this easement is to preserve the open spaces (the wooded areas and meadows); to maintain the rural landscape for the benefit of the community; to limit building additions so as to maintain a sustainable density of development and use of the property while simultaneously allowing for the historic use of the property for meetings, residency programs, and celebratory events in order to provide employment and economic opportunities for the community.
The easement will protect the property from potential future wholesale development, a risk to which the community was exposed when the property was previously listed for sale in 2010.
The easement allows modest development (no more than a 25% increase in building size) in only those areas already built upon. The height of any new building is limited to be lower than the tree line. Wooded and open parts of the campus are permanently protected, and dark sky guidelines are adhered to.
The process of developing this easement has illuminated the wonderful diversity of our community. We consulted widely and received input from the many constituencies across the community, including the Huyck Preserve, the Rensselaerville Historic District Association, the Town Historical Society, the Library, Conkling Hall, and many private individuals who generously shared their thoughts with us.
I am grateful to all of you who contributed your time and expertise to make sure that our unique community can maintain its rural nature forever through this document.
With very best wishes