Mainstone Farm is the largest remaining piece of undeveloped, unprotected open space in Wayland and one of the few of its size in the region. Well known and loved by residents for its bucolic, rolling pastures and wooded hillsides, it has long been a priority for protection by the Town of Wayland and SVT.
On Monday, April 11, 2016, Wayland town meeting passed Article 30 to appropriate $12 million from Community Preservation Funds toward the Conservation Restriction (CR) on 208 acres of Mainstone Farm. SVT greatly thanks the residents of Wayland for this wonderful support. This is a major hurdle towards the farm's permanent conservation.
The Hamlen family has owned and lived on Mainstone Farm since 1872 and continues to farm the land and manage the woodland today. The family proposes to sell a perpetual Conservation Restriction to the Town and SVT for $15 million, a discount from the $17 million value placed on the CR by an appraisal commissioned by the Town. SVT has committed to raising $3.3 million privately toward the purchase and the costs that will be incurred to craft and monitor the CR in perpetuity, and Wayland voters have committed $12 million towards acquisition from Community Preservation funds.
Under the CR, which will be jointly held by the Town and SVT, the current and future owners will be permitted to farm and conduct woodland management activities, and they will continue to pay property taxes. Trails, connecting to adjacent conservation land, will be open for passive, public recreation.
The Conservation Restriction (CR) is also available for viewing on the Town's website:http://www.wayland.ma.us/Pages/WaylandMA_Conservation/Mainstone. The CR is a legal document that, once reviewed and approved by the Wayland Conservation Commission, Wayland Board of Selectmen, SVT's Board of Directors, and the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, will protect Mainstone's scenic landscape and ecological values while allowing for active agriculture and public access to trails.
To learn more about the Mainstone Farm project, see the Frequently Asked Questions, and take a moment to watch the beautiful footage, below, filmed by Tom Cmejla.
Videos of Mainstone Farm
In the following brief interview, Devens Hamlen describes the history of Mainstone Farm and explains why his family thinks the property is worthy of conservation. (Video by Electa Tritsch.)