Ozaukee Washington Land Trust

Another Milwaukee River Success Story

VDP Sept. 2014 6Recently OWLT helped the City of Mequon protect 142 acres of open space and 3,300 feet of Milwaukee River frontage in perpetuity. 

For over a year the open space areas around the Ville du Parc development in Mequon have been a contentious and somewhat litigious issue. There were a series of vague and inconsistent open space easements surrounding the River Club of Mequon golf course. The golf course owner was arguing that he had the right to develop some of the open space property.

The City of Mequon and the surrounding subdivisions were arguing that his rights were very limited or nonexistent. Several law suits and legal opinions later the City Council in April unanimously backed a compromise that permitted a limited housing development along with a plan to clean up the patchwork of easements. This is the point where we stepped in to help shape the compromise.

Mequon agreed to allow the owner of the River Club of Mequon to develop five homes on 10 acres, with the rest of the open space and river frontage to be protected. OWLT was provided a grant to purchase a 20 acre parcel and the City purchased the remaining 122 acres of open space.

Now we’re working with Mequon to establish one conservation easement that will protect all of the parcels in a consistent fashion. The easement will be held by OWLT and most of the land will be open to the public for nature based outdoor recreational activities.

We’re pleased that both the City of Mequon and the Ville du Parc neighbors recognize OWLT as a trusted community partner. We’re grateful to the City for their efforts to protect the Milwaukee River and proud to be a part of this land protection effort.