EUGENE, Ore. - The City of Eugene Parks and Open Space Division acquired a 193 acre site known as "South Eugene Meadows" for the Ridgeline Park system. >>> View Map
With this addition, the Ridgeline Park system has grown to approximately 2,000 acres.
The city said the acquisition was possible because of partnerships with the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB) and the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), and because the landowner made a significant donation to make the transaction possible.
The funding package for the acquisition included a $750,000 grant from OWEB, an $886,000 grant from BPA, $713,000 in City bond measure funds and a $790,000 donation from the landowner.
South Eugene Meadows is located to the west of Spencer Butte Park and contains a mixture of oak woodland, oak savanna and upland prairie habitats, which have been identified by multiple conservation organizations as priority habitats to conserve in the Willamette Valley.
The site contains views of Spencer Butte.
In the future, the Ridgeline Trail will be extended through the site, providing additional opportunities for the community to recreate and experience nature close to home.
The site's location in the Ridgeline helps fulfill the vision of the Rivers to Ridges Vision and Action Plan for a continuous habitat and recreational corridor from Fern Ridge Reservoir west of Eugene to Howard Buford Park south of Springfield.
The City's grant applications were strongly supported by organizations in the Rivers to Ridges Partnership (of which the City is one of 14 partner organizations) and many community groups.
In addition to the acquisition funds, the City was able to secure three years of "stabilization funding" from the BPA. This funding, which totals $188,175, will allow the Parks and Open Space Division to maintain the site for the next three years. In a time of limited City funding for maintaining parks and natural areas, this stabilization funding from BPA is particularly important, the Open Space Division said.