State set to buy par­cel, add it to Wye Is­land park

Record Observer - - NEWS - By CHRISTO­PHER KERSEY ck­ersey@ches­

WYE MILLS — Plans are in the works for the state to buy a 20-acre par­cel to add to the Wye Is­land Nat­u­ral Re­sources Man­age­ment Area, pos­si­bly pro­vid­ing more ser­vices for boaters and rentals of space for spe­cial events.

The sale of the prop­erty is pend­ing and ex­pected to cost just un­der $1.2 mil­lion, ac­cord­ing to Gregg Bortz, pub­lic in­for­ma­tion of­fi­cer for the Mary­land De­part­ment of Nat­u­ral Re­sources.

On Wed­nes­day, Dec. 21, the state Board of Pub­lic Works ap­proved the funds.

The Mary­land Park Ser­vice, which man­ages the Wye Is­land Nat­u­ral Resource Man­age­ment Area, will de­ter­mine if any fu­ture im­prove­ments are to be made.

The new site now has two piers on the Wye River that can be used for mo­tor­ized and non-mo­tor­ized wa­ter­craft. “That’s what is con­sid­ered an im­proved ac­cess (cur­rently ready for use) as op­posed to unim­proved ac­cess, which just means that some kind of wa­ter recre­ational use is pos­si­ble in the fu­ture,” Bortz said.

Also on the new lo­ca­tion is a house that could be used as part of an ex­ist­ing con­fer­ence and rental com­plex at Wye Is­land. Al­ready, there’s a lodge and grounds avail­able to rent for meet­ings, re­treats, com­pany pic­nics, fam­ily re­unions, and weddings and re­cep­tions. The con­fer­ence lodge is lo­cated on Gra­nary Creek just off the Wye East River.

The Park Ser­vice will de­ter­mine best uses once the sale is closed and the prop­erty of­fi­cially be­comes part of the Wye River NRMA.

Wye Is­land NRMA is lo­cated in the tidal re­cesses of the Ch­e­sa­peake Bay be­tween the Wye River and the Wye East River. Of Wye Is­land’s 2,800 acres, 2,450 are man­aged by the state for resource man­age­ment, recre­ation and agri­cul­ture.

A ma­jor em­pha­sis at Wye Is­land is to pro­vide suit­able habi­tat for win­ter­ing wa­ter­fowl pop­u­la­tions and other na­tive wildlife.

A pri­mar y resource man­age­ment ob­jec­tive at Wye Is­land is the sta­bi­liza­tion of the 30 miles of ever-erod­ing shore­line. These ef­forts are ac­com­plished through a part­ner­ship be­tween DNR and nu­mer­ous en­vi­ron­men­tal ad­vo­cacy groups, such as the Ch­e­sa­peake Bay Trust, schools and scout groups.


The Wye Is­land Nat­u­ral Re­sources Man­age­ment Area will be ex­panded when the state pur­chases land near it.

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