www.illinois.gov

Pat Quinn, Governor

State Links Skip to Content Skip to State Links

 Government
 Business
 Employment
 Education
 Health & Safety
 Family & Home
 Travel & Recreation
 About Illinois
 Illinois.gov

Stay Informed

Your Government


[Search Tips]

Illinois Flag Honors

Inspector General


 IGNN: State/All Press Release

ILLINOIS NEWS
The State of Illinois News page provides access to the Illinois Government News Network and all state press releases.


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 2, 2001

Ryan's Open Land Trust Program to Protect Nature Preserve in McHenry County

SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan today announced the state has acquired 66.3 acres of land in McHenry County through the Open Land Trust Program that will protect the Lake in the Hills Fen Nature Preserve.

"The Open Land Trust program is working to protect the state's rarest resources for our children and grandchildren," Ryan said. "Throughout Illinois, this program is helping communities preserve precious open spaces for future generations to enjoy."

With this acquisition, more than 425 acres have been protected at the fen. The fen is owned and protected by three public agencies working in partnership; the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, the Village of Lake in the Hills, and the McHenry County Conservation District.

The preserve is a series of gravel hills overlooking a large complex of wetlands along Crystal Creek. There is a series of rare fens at the base of the gravel hills and along the creek and remnant prairie on the hills and ridges above the fens. The area is known for its exceptional scenic beauty, its native grasses and its many rare wildflowers. Nineteen endangered or threatened species of plants and animals occur here, one of the highest concentrations of rare species in the state.

The fen is also home to the tiny blue bell, our smallest damsel fly, which is known to exist in only two sites in Illinois. Most of the endangered species depend on the uninterrupted flow of alkaline groundwater seeping from the gravel hills.

The land, including the remaining mineral reserves, were acquired from Material Service Corporation for $2.8 million. The transaction included a considerable donation from the company. The acquisition will help preserve the gravel resources in the area, ensuring the ground water will be saturated with the minerals needed to preserve the fen and buffer the nature preserve from future development.

"This transaction is an example of how business can cooperate with regulatory agencies in satisfying the concerns of local communities for sensitive environmental issues," said Material Service Corporation President Michael Stanczak. "Material Service Corporation looks forward to continuing its efforts in working with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to address the needs of the communities in which Material Service operates."

The Open Land Trust Initiative, the largest land acquisition program in state history, is providing $160 million over four years for land purchases and improvements to protect the state's most precious natural resources.

"Preserving our open lands, our precious natural resources and our native wildlife is vital to giving every Illinois citizen a safe and healthy environment," Ryan said.

IDNR Director Brent Manning noted that Material Service Corp. voluntarily ceased mining sand and gravel at the site more than a year ago to protect the fen and donated more than 80 acres of land to establish the original nature preserve.

"This acquisition provides a critical buffer to the fen, which contains nine high quality plant communities," Manning said. "Visiting this site is like stepping back in time. Its natural diversity and scenic beauty make it an excellent place to view native landscapes. I'm pleased we were all able to work together to protect its future."


###

News Categories

 State/All
 Governor's Office
 Lt. Governor's Office
 Agriculture
 Budget/Fiscal
 Business
 Children/Families
 Culture
 Disabilities
 Economic Development
 Education
 Environment
 Flag Honors
 Health/Human Services
 History
 Infrastructure
 Opportunity Returns
 Recovery
 Safety/Security
 Technology
 Tourism/Recreation
 Transportation
 Workforce/Jobs

News Resources

 Search the News
 IIS Radio News
 RSS News Feeds
 e-News Subscriptions
 Communications Office
 Privacy Statement

Features

Sign up for an e-news subscription
Copyright © 2014 State of Illinois Site Map | Illinois Privacy Info | Kids Privacy | Web Accessibility | Contact Us