VOL. 17 ISSUE NO. 50   |  DECEMBER 14 – 20, 2011

DECEMBER 14, 2011

Successful auction bid expands Scottsdale preserve by nearly 2,000 acres

The city of Scottsdale has acquired 1,937 acres of land for the Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve at a state land auction. The city was the only bidder.

The city’s successful bid was $ 41 million – approximately $17.3 million of that will come from a Growing Smarter State Trust Land Acquisition Grant, approved by the Arizona State Parks Board in September. The remainder of the purchase price will come from money generated by two dedicated sales taxes approved by Scottsdale voters in 1995 and 2004. The use of state grant funding frees additional dollars to be used on future purchases.

“Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve is a wonderful natural resource that is growing bigger and better thanks to this acquisition and another we hope to make next week,” said Mayor W.J. “Jim” Lane. “Purchases like this expand the preserve and also demonstrate Scottsdale’s commitment to the natural environment and to an unbeatable quality of life. Tapping matching grant funds has expanded our purchasing power and is helping Scottsdale get maximum value for preserve dollars.”

With this acquisition, Scottsdale has established an important wildlife corridor by connecting approximately 13,000 acres of land in the McDowell Mountains to approximately 4,000 acres north of Dynamite for a current total of protected Preserve lands of approximately 19,000 acres and has a long-range goal to expand the preserve to about 34,000 acres, nearly a third of the city’s land area.

The preserve land acquired includes rolling topography with exposed bedrock, boulder outcrops, portions of Fraesfield Mountain and Rock Knob and upper Sonoran Desert vegetation with a number of washes housing abundant wildlife. The lands generally are located north of Pinnacle Peak Road alignment, south of the Lone Mountain alignment and between 128th Street and 136th street alignments. It is within a “recommended study boundary” that includes all of the land targeted to be part of the preserve, permanently protecting the acreage from development.

Learn more about the Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve at www.scottsdaleaz.gov/preserve.