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New item.The Spring 2014 issue of VISTAS is available online.  You’ll find it in our VISTAS Archive.  Click on the link below to receive your copy in the mail or by email.

ALT Calendar of Events

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Conservation News

Allegheny County’s Greenways map now includes the ALT Greenprint, highlighting areas with the highest priority for conservation.  You can download the Greenways map which is part of Allegheny Places, Allegheny County’s Comprehensive Plan.

An IRA Charitable Rollover permits individuals age 70½ and above to make charitable donations (think ALT!) of up to $100,000 from Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) and Roth IRAs without having to count the distributions as taxable income.  For information, please see the Independent Sector web site which also discusses proposed improvements to the law.

Allegheny Land Trust Events and News

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Sycamore Island Mushroom WalkNew item.

Saturday, July 19th, 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Verona Public Dock • 101 Arch Street, Verona, PA 15147 (map)


The Western Pennsylvania Mushroom Club is hosting a Mushroom Identification Walk on Sycamore Island on Saturday July 19th.  All are welcome to attend.  The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission has loaned us a number of kayaks for this event or you may bring your own boat.  We plan to head out from the Verona Public Dock at 101 Arch Street in Verona at 10:00 AM and return around 2:00 PM.

Because we have a limited number of kayaks, you must register for this event by sending email to Caitlin Seiler, Stewardship Coordinator,   Please include your name, phone number, number of adults and number of children who will be attending, and if you are bringing your own boat or will require a loaned kayak.

For additional information, check out the event flyer or call 412-741-2750 x207.

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Dead Man’s Hollow: First Planning Meeting Solicits Public Input

Dead Man's Hollow Conservation Area.

On April 23rd, Allegheny Land Trust, working with Pashek & Associates, held the first of several public meetings to gather input for a management plan to enhance the unique assets of the Dead Man’s Hollow Conservation Area.  During the meeting, this PowerPoint presentation (19.3MB) was used to explain the planning process that will be used and the goals ALT has for this property.  This presentation also contains an analysis of the site and an inventory of its existing trails and vegetation.

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Local Community Asked to Help Protect Green Space

Catholic Institute property poster.
Click image to enlarge or download
an 11 x 8-1/2 PDF (10MB) version

Allegheny Land Trust is in the final stages of a local fund-raising campaign to match a state grant to purchase 48 acres adjacent to the Sewickley Hills Borough Park on Magee Road for permanent green space.  Once acquired by the land trust, the property will be available for public use, including hiking, biking, bird watching, and horseback riding.  Protecting the land will also help to create a 1,500-acre greenway between Sewickley Hills Park and Sewickley Heights Park, buffer noise and air pollution from I-79, reduce the risk of flooding downstream, and enhance surrounding property values.  (See below for more on this land protection project.)

“We have been working very hard for many years to protect this property for the community,” said Chris Beichner, ALT Executive Director.  “Now the community needs to respond to this unique opportunity by filling the financial gap to protect this land for future generations.  State grants and local pledges totaling $450,000 have been raised thus far towards the goal of $660,000.”

You can help ALT reach the $660,000 goal by making a pledge of support now.  Please or call 412-741-2750 x203 with your pledge amount.  Thank you in advance for your support!

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ALT Announces Catholic Institute Land Acquisition Project

Unveiling the fundraising sign.
Unveiling the Fund-raising Sign

Catholic Institute Property location.
Catholic Institute Property Location

Allegheny Land Trust has launched a local fund-raising campaign to protect 48 acres in Sewickley Hills that is currently owned by the Catholic Institute of Pittsburgh.  On June 14th, a press conference was held to announce the new campaign and a fund-raising sign was unveiled, showcasing the goal of raising $160,000 in local funds to complete the $660,000 needed to purchase the property.  Senator Matt Smith (D-Allegheny) and Representative Mark Mustio (R-Allegheny) pledged to work together on supporting the project and a state grant application to the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR).  Other presenters included Sewickley Hills Borough Council President Cindy Phillips and ALT Executive Director Chris Beichner.

The parcel to be protected is located between Magee Road and Interstate 79, and is adjacent to Sewickley Hills Park as well as land already owned by ALT.  When this parcel is acquired by ALT, over 1,200 acres of contiguous ALT and municipal park lands will be available for public benefit and passive recreation.  Benefits of protecting this property include higher local property values, hiking trails, habitat for wildlife, and preservation of the area’s scenic rural character.

ALT has submitted a $500,000 grant request to DCNR to help acquire this property.  Local matching funds from the community are needed to leverage state and federal funds.  So far, $40,000 has been pledged by local individuals, leaving $120,000 in donations needed by September 30th to purchase the land.  You can help raise these local matching funds with a quick, easy online donation using a major credit card or through your PayPal account.  Go to our How to Help page and be sure to select “Catholic Institute Property” to direct your donation to this project.  Thank you for your generous support!

Read more about the land acquisition in this Tribune-Review article.

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It’s your Community, your Future and your Choice

Allegheny Land Trust's 212-acre Joshua C. Whetzel Preserve along the banks of the Monongahela River
A wooded slope protected
by Allegheny Land Trust.

212-acre Joshua C. Whetzel Preserve

Since 1993, ALT has protected more than 1,500 acres in 21 municipalities in Allegheny and Washington Counties.  These lands help to manage storm and floodwaters, provide scenic beauty and protect wildlife habitat and biodiversity.  Secondary benefits include opportunities for non-motorized passive recreation such as hiking, improved marketability and value of adjacent properties and preservation of a community’s rural character.


Bare Hillside
A wooded slope NOT protected
by Allegheny Land Trust

What is Allegheny Land Trust doing to curb this trend?

Allegheny Land Trust empowers people to shape the future of their community by providing the technical skills and know-how to protect treasured local open space.  Green space is more vulnerable than ever as public subsidies are now being used to transform local green space into suburban sprawl.

Please take a few moments to explore our web site to learn more about ALT and our land conservation practices and programs.


Vision: To be recognized as the regional leader in local land conservation and stewardship

Mission: To serve as the lead land trust conserving and stewarding lands that support the scenic, recreational and environmental well-being of communities in Allegheny County and its environs.

Allegheny Land Trust