Have Fleming Road Landowners Found a New Way to Defend Fight “Improvement” of Road?

Advice left by someone attending the first public hearing on widening and otherwise imrpvioving Fleming Road.

The following came in an email from The Land Conservancy of McHenry County.

From what little knowledge I have of Fleming Road, it is an extraordinary drive through the hills left by the retreating glacier.

Residents of the area fear that the McHenry County Board is planning to “improve” it enough to allow it to be an Eastern Bypass of Woodstock.

The Land Conservancy may offer an obstacle unforeseen by county officials.  Maybe not.  What do you read between the lines of the following part of the newsletter?

Here’s how the group explains what it is doing:

For 20 years, TLC has been working in McHenry County to provide individuals with an option for preserving their land that would not otherwise exist.

"Daffodils NOT Asphalt" the yard sign says.

From the first donated conservation easement on Alice & Leta Clark’s 5 acres at the corner of Thompson Road and Route 120, to the string of Natural Heritage Corridor easements along Fleming Road, The Land Conservancy of McHenry County has been helping individuals exercise some measure of control over the future with this powerful tool called the conservation easement.

Residents along Fleming Road turned to TLC for help maintaining the rural character of the corridor – forever.

And they chose to give up certain rights on a portion of the land they each own in order to preserve the character – as well as the hills and trees – of this unique resource.

The Fleming Road Legacy

"Scemic Route NOT Truck Route" is the message on another yard sign.

Of all the roadways in the county, Fleming Road, with its high concentration of remnant oak woodlands, a landscape that is rich with remnant glacial landforms, and its location in the Boone Creek Fen groundwater recharge area, is perhaps the most obvious example of a natural heritage corridor.

In September 2010, TLC’s board voted to allow The Land Conservancy to partner with municipalities and landowners to preserve those road corridors that pass through areas of the county that still retain high natural resource values-the Natural Heritage Corridor Program.

Fleming Road travels through one of the largest concentrations of remnant oak woodlands in McHenry County, and approximately 1½ miles of Fleming Road passes through the groundwater recharge area for the Boone Creek Fen Illinois Natural Area Inventory (INAI) site and Nature Preserve.

TLC holds several other conservation easements on and near the Fleming Road corridor, totaling 240 acres. To date, TLC has completed thirteen Natural Heritage Corridor easements with landowners along Fleming Road, and another 15 are still being negotiated. Thank you to all the Fleming Road easement donors for their commitment to preserving this shared resource.

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