|To our PCT members and friends:|
You may know that a proposed multi-use development, “Sierra Vista Commons,” is under consideration by Easthampton’s Planning Board and Conservation Commission. This 30+ acre development starts at Route 10 and spreads back over farmland, wetlands and forest, down to the critical habitat of the Manhan River, a focus of our work for decades.
Your PCT board is looking closely at the plans presented by the developer and offering alternative visions for how this land could be developed. We have some serious concerns about the impacts this commercial/residential project would have on our community at large and our precious natural resources.
Our Dwyer Conservation Area and its trails are situated 400’ across the Manhan from the proposed development. Sierra Vista plans to construct dense housing coming downhill and ending in proximity to the river. Our mission is to protect Easthampton’s natural resources, and we worry about a loss of habitat along this unique corridor, used by wildlife to travel through the very heart of our city. The river, the rich fields, and the old trees that currently exist here are critical habitat for creatures large and small. Current plans would destroy or impact much of this land. Two and a half acres of trees plus many more acres of grade A farmland will be buried under pavement and imported topsoil.
The two following links are maps of the proposed project and the environmental impact.
Link to before and after maps of proposed project
Link to map of environmental context
At the December 2022 board meeting John Bator officially stepped down as President of PCT. A motion was made to have Dianne McLane, the Vice President, to step into the President position which she accepted and the board also approved. A motion was also made to make John the Vice President which he accepted and was also approved by the board. Marty Klein, longtime board member gave a short speech and extolled the many accomplishments that John has made for the Trust and the city of Easthampton.
Sue Walz’s 2023 calendars are now available. They are $18.00 and feature updated seasonal photographs of Mount Tom and Nashawannuck Pond for each month. Proceeds benefit the Pascommuck Conservation Trust. You may call Sue Walz at 413-527-0885 to purchase a calendar.
Bridges were recently replaced at both the Dwyer Conservation area as well as at Pomeroy Meadows Conservation area. The bridge at Dwyer consisted of mainly replacing the wooden bridge across the first major wetland are with another wooden bridge. However the bridge at Pomeroy Meadows consisted of switching out the wooden bridge with one consisting of aluminum girders as well as aluminum railings. Some of the rotted steps were also replaced on the stairs located after the bridge. Thanks to the work parties who managed the demolishing of the old bridges and the reconstruction of the new and improved ones.
The plant sale was held on a cool cloudy day. Perhaps because of the holiday weekend the number of people attending the plant sale was not as numerous as previous plant sales.
Despite the lower number of people attending the sales from plants and t-shirts totaled $858, and raffle ticket sales totaled $468. In addition 3 people signed up for memberships which totaled $112. The grand total came to $1,438.
Thanks to all who attended and contributed!