The North Shore Land Alliance has long been interested in acquiring and preserving approximately seven acres of land that connects Nassau County’s Upper Francis Pond Preserve (formerly known as Smithers Pond) to the south, with Shu Swamp Preserve to the north. In the past several months, the Land Alliance has been working with the owner and their representatives to acquire the property. The Land Alliance is currently in contract and anticipates closing on this important acquisition by early summer of 2016.
The property is incredibly important from an ecological and environmental perspective: It consists of freshwater wetlands, underwater lands, a waterway that connects Upper and Lower Francis Ponds, pond frontage, mature woodlands, undeveloped uplands and existing trails that traverse the property. Aside from their ecological value and the fact that these parcels connect two existing preserves, the property is also an important viewshed along Beaver Brook
Road (there is nearly 1,700 feet of road frontage) and it is another seminal piece to the preservation puzzle that now includes the Humes property and will, we hope, include the Japanese Stroll Garden.
Once it is acquired, the Land Alliance will work with the Village of Mill Neck and other regulatory authorities to repair, improve and expand the existing trail so that the property can be publicly accessible and connect to the adjacent Shu Swamp Preserved.