WESTTOWN TWP, PA — Rep. Craig Williams (R-Delaware/Chester) announced that Westtown Township has been awarded $4 million toward the acquisition of Crebilly Farm by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR). This grant – when combined with the previously announced $2 million grant – offsets a total of $6 million of the almost $16 million required to preserve this historic property. The Congressman stated his dedication to preserving open space in our communities while also keeping local tax increases minimal for Westtown residents.
“Preservation of open space in our communities is one of my top priorities. In November, the residents of Westtown Township overwhelmingly voted to purchase Crebilly Farm through local tax increases to halt development on this historically significant property,” Williams said. “I promised Westtown residents I would pursue every possible offset to their local tax increases. This grant announced by DCNR – when combined with the $2 million grant from last September – addresses $6 million of the almost $16 million needed to save the property.”
The grant will acquire the Crebilly Farm – 206 acres of open land – preserving it as a new township park. The new park will also connect local trail systems that run through the Greater Philadelphia area. The Crebilly Farm property is the centerpiece of the 400-acre Brandywine Battlefield. Other municipalities in the district have worked hard on preserving space around the battlefield, including partnering with private organizations.
Supported by federal dollars, DCNR was allocated money from the Land and Water Conservation Fund established by Congress in 1964. These grant dollars safeguard natural areas, water resources and cultural heritage.
“The unfortunate reality is that our portions of Chester and Delaware counties will always be under pressure to over-build. It creates burdens all around, including on our traffic, our schools, our municipal services and our public safety, among others. It also diminishes the historic draw of our region,” Williams said. “I learned early in my Marine Corps career to refuse binary thinking about solving problems. I believe we may continue to preserve open space by leveraging a host of programs and ideas (like the federal dollars available in this instance). Rather than a binary choice, it becomes a problem-solving moment for us all.”
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