Forever Wild votes to acquire 110 acre addition to Cahaba River Park in Shelby County

Forever Wild
Cahaba River Park. (C J McCollum)

The Forever Wild Board of Trustees voted last week to acquire 110 acres of ecologically significant land adjacent to Cahaba River Park in Shelby County.

The measure, which was passed by the Board unanimously, directs Forever Wild staff to conduct a second appraisal and proceed to purchase the property. 

To complete the deal, the state will do its due diligence by conducting environmental studies on the property. The current landowner must also agree to the appraised price. 

110 Acres and 7 Miles of Riverfront

Forever Wild
Cahaba River Park. (C J McCollum)

“This parcel will be a great acquisition for the Forever Wild program,” Commissioner Chris Blankenship told Bham Now after the Board meeting. “It is adjacent to property we already own and is bounded on the other three sides by the Cahaba River. Protecting this ecologically important river while also expanding waterfront public access in this fast growing area of Shelby County will provide great benefits to the citizens of Alabama.” 

According to Shelby County Administrator Chad Scroggins, the joint project between Forever Wild and Shelby County has been able to preserve a little over 1800 acres. The County has developed an extensive network of hiking, trail running and mountain bike trails. The land also provides access to Shades Creek and Cahaba River.

“It (the 110 acre addition) is a key piece in the project,” Scroggins described. “We will be able to give residents and visitors very good access to the Cahaba River. It’s a little over seven miles of riverfront.”

Forever Wild Partnerships Work

Commissioner Blankenship summed up the project best:

“This addition by the Forever Wild Land Trust Board furthers our outstanding partnership with Shelby County. The Shelby County Commission and County Administrator Chad Scroggins share our passion for protecting critical properties and providing outdoor recreational opportunities for our citizens and visitors. It just means so much for our quality of life. These purchases show you can have growth and development in a county and also protect special places for all to enjoy, humans and wildlife alike.”

Want to learn more about Cahaba River Park? Visit Discover Shelby.

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Pat Byington
Pat Byington

Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.

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