Nonprofit to buy land at border of Fairborn/Beavercreek to preserve wetlands and add to Spotted Turtle Trail

The Beaver Creek flows through Phillips Park, near the start of the proposed "Spotted Turtle Trail." This trail would make the Beaver Creek wetlands more accessible to the public. STAFF/JIM NOELKER
The Beaver Creek flows through Phillips Park, near the start of the proposed "Spotted Turtle Trail." This trail would make the Beaver Creek wetlands more accessible to the public. STAFF/JIM NOELKER

A Greene County nonprofit plans to buy land off of East Dayton-Yellow Springs Road in Fairborn to preserve wetlands and water resources in the area using Clean Ohio Grant funds.

This is land B-W Greenway Community Land Trust has been working to preserve for years. The land runs along the Beaver Creek and is behind the development with TJ Chumps and Arby’s in Fairborn. The land is in part of Beavercreek. In 2018, B-W Greenway got Clean Ohio funds to purchase about five acres of land just south of this current site.

The land now being sought along the Beaver Creek is currently owned by Oberer Construction Managers. B-W Greenway said they are preserving the land from being developed by protecting it in this way.

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Once the site is sold and if the grant is awarded, funds will go toward building a parking lot at the site off of Market Court, removal of invasive species and planting native trees and shrubs on the two acres of land. If the plan is funded and carried through, the nonprofit organization would donate the land to the city with deed restrictions and the land would be added to the Valley View Reserve, according to the grant application.

B-W Greenway is applying for about $432,000 to buy the land and the other costs associated with that, like planting native species and building a parting lot. Oberer is going to contribute a 25% local match for the project.

Marilyn Baumer, land stewardship coordinator for B-W Greenway Community Land Trust, said this area will also become part of the Spotted Turtle Trail, a 15-mile trail system being built to give Greene County residents more access to the wetlands and other preserved lands in the county.

The Beaver Creek Wetlands Association is spearheading the Spotted Turtle Trail project. The association hopes to finish the project in seven phases over five years. The new trail system would span from Pearl’s Fen in Fairborn to Rotary Park in Beavercreek.

Baumer said B-W Greenway and the Beaver Creek Wetlands Association have worked to preserve the land along the Beaver Creek for years.

“One of our largest assets is water and access to clean water,” Baumer said. “Preserving the land like this protects the water and also provides flood control and run off control. We’re also balancing development in that area with protected space.”

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This site is also nearby the Beerman Fen owned by Beaver Creek Wetlands Association, according to the grant application.

B-W Greenway got letters of support for this grant application from the Greene County commissioners, Fairborn and Bath Twp., Baumer said. The application is due on May 14 and the nonprofit should find out in the next few months if the funds will be awarded to them, Baumer said.

B-W Greenway has also recently applied for a Clean Ohio grant for five acres near Community Park in Fairborn along the Beaver Creek, Baumer said.

“Our primary goal has been protecting our best areas,” Baumer said, “whether that be wetland or areas near creeks.”

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