LETTER: Generous islanders help preserve Hilltop
The successful completion of the Bainbridge Island Land Trust’s fundraising campaign for the Hilltop acquisition is great news, and brings us particular satisfaction.
The purchase of this property would not have been possible without the remarkably generous and committed people of Bainbridge Island, and other supporters who helped preserve Hilltop for the community, forever.
While the primary burden of raising the money for this project fell on the land trust, Bainbridge Island would not have this priceless, public open-space, protected conservation land and cross-Island trail connection without a great partnership between the Land Trust and the Bainbridge Island Metropolitan Parks and Recreation District.
The park district’s willingness to take ultimate ownership of Hilltop, and its early commitment of scarce land acquisition funds, provided important validation of the Land Trust’s decision to acquire the property. Parks’ successful application for grant funding from the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program was another major boost, and allowed early transfer of a small piece of the property directly to Parks. The park district’s early construction of the connector trail between the East and West Grand Forest was a daily advertisement to the public of the value of this acquisition, and certainly played a role in developing the broad and generous community support this project enjoyed.
Hilltop is a model for what a public-private partnership can be. We are very proud to have been a part of it.
Hilltop Campaign Co-Chairs
LEE CROSS, KEN DEWITT
Bainbridge Island Parks Commissioners