The County, with its funds and contributions from the State and Cranbury Township, purchased an agriculture preservation easement on the Reinhardt Farm, owned by Roy Reinhardt of Cranbury Township.
The total cost of the development rights for the farm on Plainsboro Road are $1,049,085. The State contributed $629,451. The County paid $209,817 and Cranbury Township also paid $209,817. The purchase was completed January 6th, 2015.
“My Freeholder colleagues and I are committed to preserving as much open space as we can to protect the environment and safeguard the County’s agricultural past,” said Middlesex County Freeholder Director Ronald G. Rios.
This acquisition brings the County’s total amount of preserved farmland through the Farmland Preservation Program to 4,892 acres. Over 2,533 of these preserved acres are located in Cranbury Township.
Overall, with the addition of the Reinhardt Farm, more than 5,437 acres of farmland, have been preserved throughout the County. (That number includes preservation easements purchased through the County Farmland Preservation Program funds, as well as purchases made directly by the State, the municipalities, non-profit organizations and land donated to the County.)
The acquisition of the Reinhardt Farm brings Cranbury Township’s overall total preserved farmland base to 34 farms totaling over 2,637 acres—which includes preserved lands through the Farmland Preservation Program as well as through other means such as municipal easements.
Through the cooperation of the Township of Cranbury, the state and the County, these 37+ acres of land will be forever saved,” said Middlesex County Freeholder Carol Barrett Bellante, liaison to the County’s Open Space Advisory Committee. “This is a great day for Middlesex County and the environment.”
Middlesex County’s Farmland Preservation Program purchases the non-agriculture development rights on farmland that meets criteria established by the Middlesex County Agriculture Development Board and the New Jersey State Agriculture Development Committee. The value is determined by two independent appraisals. The farmland is preserved by placing an agriculture preservation easement on the property. The state, county and town share the cost of the farms’ development rights, with the state paying the majority of the purchase price. Middlesex County’s program is strictly voluntary. Farmland owners interested in participating in the program must submit a formal application to the County Agriculture Development Board. Farm owners interested in the program can contact Laurie Sobel, Senior Environmental Planner, of the Middlesex County Office of Planning at 732-745-4014.