Funding to support protection of record 55,575 acres through the Virginia Land Conservation Foundation
RICHMOND, VA — Governor Glenn Youngkin today announced $14.7 million in Virginia Land Conservation Foundation funding for 29 projects throughout the Commonwealth. The projects include land acquisitions for new public outdoor recreation areas, and conservation easements to protect active forests and farmland.
“Our Commonwealth boasts so much history and natural beauty, from the mountains and waterways to farmland and vineyards and all the open spaces and parks we enjoy,” said Governor Glenn Youngkin. “Protecting working farmland and forests, creating new heritage tourism sites and increasing public access to outdoor recreational opportunities all support the key forces driving Virginia’s economy: agriculture, tourism and forestry.”
Grants were awarded in the following categories: farmland preservation, forest preservation, historic preservation, natural area protection, and open spaces and parks.
“These Virginia Land Conservation Foundation grant awards continue to demonstrate our administration’s commitment to expanding opportunities for Virginians to recreate outdoors,” said Secretary of Natural and Historic Resources Travis Voyles. “Along Virginia’s waterways and in expansive areas to be restored as habitat for elk and other wildlife, these investments will support places where Virginians can explore and truly enjoy the natural resources of the Commonwealth.”
“We’re excited that this year’s grant round will protect a record 55,575 acres,” said Director of the Department of Conservation and Recreation Matthew Wells. “In addition to preserving Virginia’s scenic byways and river frontage, these strategically targeted land conservation projects will help improve our water quality, protect biodiversity and enhance public access to the outdoors.”
VLCF board members are appointed by the governor, the Senate and the House of Delegates. The board includes the Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry. DCR provides staff support to the board.
Projects awarded funding include:
- Highlands-Lonesome Pine – Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources (Wise, Buchanan and Dickenson Counties), $1 million for a conservation easement to protect 44,327 acres
- Buffalo Mountain Natural Area Preserve-LCI Addition – Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (Floyd County), $3.6 million to acquire 1,000 acres adjacent to Buffalo Mountain Natural Area Preserve
- Acquiring Rappahannock Tribe’s Ancestral Homelands Phase III, Rappahannock Tribe of Virginia (Richmond County), $1.7 million to acquire 964 acres on the Rappahannock River at Fones Cliffs
A FULL LIST OF THE FISCAL YEAR 2024 VLCF AWARDS CAN BE FOUND HERE.