A Conservation Restriction (CR) is a voluntary legal agreement between a landowner and a qualified conservation organization or agency, such as the East Quabbin Land Trust, that protects the land from future development. A CR is a flexible technique that can be tailored to the specific needs of the landowner and resources to be protected. In general, the rights to mine, dump, pave and build are forever eliminated as permitted uses on land covered by a CR. The conservation organization accepts the responsibility to monitor the property and enforce the terms of the CR. The landowner retains ownership and the remaining rights to use the land, sell it, or pass it on to heirs. For more questions and answers check out the Frequently Asked Questions.

If donated for conservation purposes in perpetuity, a restriction is a tax-deductible charitable gift and may substantially reduce estate taxes.

Pine Island, 17 acres off Barre Road, Hardwick

In 1997, Gordon Wood and Daisy Shenholm donated a conservation restriction over 17acres of their property in the center of Hardwick. The land once supported the world famous Mixter Guernsey Dairy Herd. The property connects with other permanently protected farmland.

Maple Hill Farm, 38 acres on Prouty Road, Hardwick

The 38 acres on either side of Prouty Road was protected in 2000 when the Liland family bought the land and they donated a conservation restriction to EQLT. The majority of Maple Hill Farm was already protected by a conservation restriction. The fields, woods and wetlands are being managed to promote biological diversity and maintain the aesthetics of an open landscape.

Smokey Field Farm, 255 acres on Spring Hill Road, Barre / Hardwick
(co-held CR with TTOR)
The East Quabbin Land Trust purchased a conservation restriction on the Smokey Field Farm in cooperation with the Trustees of Reservations in 2000. Conservation of Smokey Field Farm was a priority because of the farming tradition, scenic vistas and natural resources on the land. The CR purchase provided the financial resources necessary to keep the farm in the family and maintain active agriculture.
Moose Brook Fields, 68 acres on Prouty and Brook Roads, Hardwick
This property includes significant frontage along Moose Brook, a pristine cold-water stream in Hardwick and Barre. A portion along Prouty Road was part of an intensive gravel operation under a prior owner. The EQLT worked with a conservation buyer to pre-acquire the property, then transfer the land and subsequently accept a conservation restriction on most of the acreage.
Butterfly pasture, 36 acres on North Main Street, West Brookfield
In 2007, the EQLT accepted its first CR in West Brookfield. The land is wooded with a 4-acre field and access to Coy Brook. The field is being managed to promote diverse plants that support our native butterflies, and other insects and birds.