In July of 2009, The Town of New London protected 91.41 acres on the west end of Clark Pond with the ASLPT agreeing to hold the easement. This journey to protect 1,188' of shoreline on Clark Pond began in 1975.
In 1996, Anita Lockhead offered to the Conservation Commission, as a gift, a 19.5 acre parcel adjacent to I-89. This land abutted the parcels described by Esther Currier twenty-one years earlier. Because acquisition of this property was consistent with the long term objective of conserving the area on Clark Pond (if and when other parcels could be acquired by the Town) the Commission recommended, and the Selectmen approved, the acceptance of this gift.
Eric Schultz's property on Clark Pond was listed in a table of "Lands with Attractive Features Worthy of Protection"; in the 1998 Master Plan. At this time, the Commission approached Mr. Schultz regarding its longer term interest in acquiring and protecting his property because of its natural features and shoreline.
Then it was learned, in 1999, that a 23.6 acre parcel on Bog Road was on the market. Because this property could provide road access to the 19.5 acre Town land and, more importantly (if it became available), would give road access to the Schultz parcel on Clark Pond, the Commission recommended its purchase, which was supported by the Budget Committee and the Selectmen.
Early in 2007, Mr. Schultz contacted the Commission to say that he was ready to discuss the sale of the Clark Pond shore land parcel. After an independent appraisal the Commission made an offer, contingent on Town Meeting approval, and this was accepted. The foresight of the Commission and support of the Town in establishing a Capital Reserve for exactly this type of conservation land made it possible to obtain overwhelming support for the purchase at the 2008 Town Meeting.
We should all be proud to realize New London Conservation Commission Chairman Esther Currier’s vision first expressed 30 years ago. Because the Town owns the Clark Pond property, for the land to be protected "in perpetuity" a conservation easement is held by Ausbon Sargent completing the final step in preserving this unique 91 acre property for the enjoyment of future generations.
The property has frontage on two public roads (Bog Road and I-89). In addition to the 1,188' of shoreline, there is significant wildlife habit and a large wetland whose preservation contributes to the area water quality. The Conservation Commission has upgraded the .75 mile trail which borders the western shoreline and leaves from Bog Road.