Mayor Barry announces launch of Metro Conservation Assistance Fund

(Courtesy: Nashville’s Italian Lights festival)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Mayor Megan Barry announced Monday the launch of Metro’s Conservation Assistance Fund.

The grant is a new program to help accelerate the preservation of open and green space in Davidson County.

The fund will begin with an initial metro investment of $500,000, which was recommended by Mayor Barry and approved by the metro council in June.

The creation of the new initiative is to more effectively protect public or private lands with documented merits for natural-resource conservation or open-space preservation.

Mayor Barry expressed her optimism about the new initiative.

“This private-public approach provides a much-needed tool for more strategically preserving our remaining green spaces, so that Nashville remains a beautiful, sustainable, livable city for current and future generations. By partnering with our local nonprofits that have an established track-record on land conservation, Metro’s investments in open space will go further, and our Parks Department can be more flexible and nimble in this booming real-estate market, “says Barry.

According to Plan to Play – Metro Parks Department’s new strategic master plan – if Nashville continues the current rate-of-growth, an additional 4,000 acres of land will be needed by 2027 to maintain levels-of-service for public access to parks and greenways.