Tag Archives: region

Lathrop’s North Campus: Part of a Larger Whole

by Barbara Walvoord

If our east campus is a “missing link” between conserved lands (last week’s column), then our north campus is part of a larger whole–the large Fitzgerald Lake Conservation Area, legally and permanently in “Conservation Restriction” (green).  Lathrop’s protected area is the toe of the boot near the bottom right:

map north area 1456152439_582037240

The map shows several important relationships:

  • Our campus forms a protective shield around Pine Brook, which flows east into the Connecticut River. Our run-off, our land management practices, our construction–all directly impact the quality of the brook and the Connecticut River.
  • Our “conservation restriction” land forms the southern tail of the larger, city-owned Fitzgerald Lake Conservation Area.
  • Our trail connects directly to a whole system of trails in the Fitzgerald Lake Area. On their trail map, we are called “loop trail” (http://www.broadbrookcoalition.org/files/Fitzgerald_Lake.pdf).
  • The Fitzgerald Lake area is a priority in the Northampton city open spaces plan: (http://www.northamptonma.gov/DocumentCenter/View/923).
  • The Broad Brook Coalition, a very active citizen group that manages the Fitzgerald Lake Conservation Area, is our natural collaborator (www.broadbrookcoalition.org).

Continue reading Lathrop’s North Campus: Part of a Larger Whole

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The Missing Link

As part of the “Year of the Brooks” series, last week’s column explored our lands as part of the Connecticut River watershed. Now I’ll narrow down a bit to our immediate vicinity for the east campus (north campus, you’ll have a future column).

This map shows our east campus (outlined in black) in relation to adjacent land that is permanently in conservation or agricultural protection (shaded).

map Park Hill conserved land scan0035

You’ll see that our east campus includes a plot of protected land that lies within the city of Northampton. The rest of our east campus land is not protected, but forms a “missing link” between the Ravenwold protected land to our north and the Park Hill protected land to our south and west. The photo at the top of this article shows the beauty of this land, with Bassett Brook running through it.

Both towns’ “open-space” plans prioritize this area, including filling in the missing links. As we enter conversation with both towns about future building and conservation on our land, we represent, to them, a “missing link.”