Florida Communities Trust Partners with Pasco County to Acquire Pasco Palms
~ Acquisition will protect natural resources in a built-out urban area ~
June 2, 2010
TALLAHASSEE - The Department of Community Affairs (DCA) today announced that Florida Communities Trust (FCT), the state's premier program for helping local communities preserve open space and recreational areas, partnered with Pasco County to acquire the Pasco Palms property. The 115-acre property will provide natural resource protection through an urban nature preserve in a built out area.
"Florida's unique coastal resources are a part of what makes our state so special and it is important to preserve these resources for wildlife to thrive and residents and visitors to enjoy," said DCA Secretary Tom Pelham. "I am pleased that Pasco County has partnered with Florida Communities Trust to preserve this coastal gem and provide needed recreational opportunities in this urban area."
Pasco Palms is located in southwestern Pasco County adjacent to Eagle Point Park, an existing County owned park previously funded by FCT. The property is one of the last remaining coastal lands in the most densely developed area of the County and features natural communities that serve as habitat for a variety of animal species. The proposed recreational amenities include a wildlife observation platform, covered picnic pavilion, front-porch style swing, nature trails and at least four geocaches. Florida Communities Trust awarded $358,063 in Florida Forever funds for the acquisition, and Pasco County provided an equal amount in local matching funds.
"This property has been high on the list for many years so we are thrilled to have it permanently protected in partnership with Florida Communities Trust," said Ann Hildebrand, Pasco County Commissioner. "Pasco Palms and Eagle Point Park together provide recreational opportunities and protection of important coastal resources so close to the urban core, for the benefit of present and future generations."
Florida Communities Trust also recently announced the program passed the $800 million milestone in funding for projects statewide since its inception. Each year, the Florida Communities Trust Parks and Open Space Program receives $63 million of the funds generated by the Florida Forever program, which carries on the legacy of Preservation 2000 as the nation's leading state-level land conservation program. Since 1991, funds provided by the Trust have created more than 500 local and regional parks in communities across Florida.