Conservation Case Studies

Category to drop feature articles about conservation success stories.

July at the Piedmont Memorial Overlook

The native flower meadow our Piedmont Memorial Overlook property is almost at peak bloom!

This 50-acre property, which has one of the best views in Northern Virginia, is publicly accessible via Sky Meadows State Park. It’s a one-way 1.6-mile hike there via the Ambassador Whitehouse Trail, but many people make it a 4.6-mile loop that includes a stretch of the Appalachian Trail.

The Relentless Pursuit

In the 16 years I’ve been working for The Piedmont Environmental Council, I have had the privilege and opportunity to help many landowners protect the wonderful natural, cultural, and scenic resources of our Piedmont region. During that time, I’ve never been accused of finding a property unworthy of protection.

Year One on the Farm

Year One on the Farm

Loudoun County is one of the most affluent counties in the nation and simultaneously home to some 14,000 people without reliable access to affordable, nutritious food. It is consistently one of the fastest-growing counties in the nation, and yet over 200,000 acres is planned to remain rural with over 58,000 acres of permanently conserved open space. Nestled among the three roundabouts of Routes 15 and 50 and Howser’s Branch Road, lies PEC’s Community Farm. Located at the literal intersection of suburban and rural Loudoun County, it is perfectly positioned both to shine a light on the value of conservation and to make practical, tangible progress to address food insecurity in the community.

Award-Winning Farmer Protects Farmland for Future Generations

Award-Winning Farmer Protects Farmland for Future Generations

This past summer, in an effort to preserve the prime farmland and help ensure continued operations, the Nixons chose to permanently protect 382 acres of their land through a conservation easement with the Piedmont Environmental Council, Culpeper Soil and Water Conservation District and USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Neighborly Effort to Protect the Piedmont

Neighborly Effort to Protect the Piedmont

“This beautiful and agricultural open land was here before we purchased Waverley and it’s my hopeful intention that it will look the same as it does today long after I’m gone,” remarked Charlotte Tieken, Somerset resident and owner of Waverley Farm.

The Piedmont Environmental Council worked with Ms. Tieken to put 669 acres of her property under conservation easement at the close of 2017.

More About Roundabout Meadows

More About Roundabout Meadows

Over a 20 year period, The Piedmont Environmental Council has played a leadership role in preserving the historic and scenic landscape at Gilberts Corner. This Rte. 15 & 50 corridor serves as the symbolic gateway to the Piedmont; essentially a transition point between suburban and rural Loudoun County. PEC has defined the vision, forged the partnerships, created the policy framework and actively engaged in a series of conservation transactions covering some 326 acres that is designed to preserve the rural character of Gilberts Corner.

PEC Donates Land to National Park

PEC Donates Land to National Park

Shenandoah National Park just grew a little bigger and a little more beautiful. This past May, We donated a 17.2-acre property of ours in Rappahannock County to the National Park Service. A forested and vacant parcel on a mountain slope south of Sperryville, Virginia, the land is within the legislative boundary of Shenandoah National Park.

“The property is surrounded by the park on three of its four sides, so it’s a key puzzle piece,” says Carolyn Sedgwick, PEC’s Rappahannock County land conservation officer, who oversaw the donation from PEC to the National Park Service. “This great public-private partnership with the National Park Service has resulted in the expansion of one of the most important wildlife corridors on the east coast.”

The donated acreage is by an area in the national park designated as federal wilderness — the highest conservation designation for federal land — making it an important and strategic area to conserve.