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Grand Canyon and Colorado Plateau conservation advocates : Grand Canyon Trust

Home » Arizona » State Trust Land Reform » Accomplishments


Our work on state trust land reform began with the Flagstaff Visioning 2020 Process, which led to several plans that identified key areas for protection.

Observatory Mesa. The Grand Canyon Trust has worked for the last fifteen years with city, county, and state government officials to see state lands on Observatory Mesa be conserved for the benefit of the present community and generations to come. Currently, we are supporting the City of Flagstaff’s petition to have the lands reclassified for conservation purposes.

Picture Canyon. In 2012, Picture Canyon was purchased for $4.8 million by the city of Flagstaff, thus permanently protecting the 480-acre state trust land parcel. Picture Canyon is named for the hundreds of pictographs and other evidence of Northern Sinagua occupation from centuries ago. The Trust was instrumental in developing and getting passed the 2004 open space initiative that provided funding for its acquisition.

Rogers Lake. In 2010, we protected 2,250 acres of state trust lands at Rogers Lake, a valuable wetlands known for its natural resources, cultural resources, and wildlife.

Arizona Preserve Initiative. The Trust helped draft an amendment to state law that protects lands within and up to 10 miles beyond Flagstaff city limits. The amendment, which passed with our help, covers lands near Rogers Lake, Dry Lake, Kachina Village, and includes all of the NAU Centennial Forest lands.

Dry Lake. The Trust was intimately involved in measures to save Dry Lake. We helped develop a community partnership that resulted in the eternal protection of 247 acres. We also supported a $3.8M campaign to purchase the property, helped obtain Congressional approval for $2.5M through the Land & Water Conservation Fund for Dry Lake, and negotiated a $200,000 developer-matching challenge. Learn more...

Flagstaff Open Space Bonding. In 2004, we led a campaign to pass two open-space bond measures in Flagstaff. The bonds were for purchasing state trust lands on Observatory Mesa and throughout Flagstaff’s neighborhoods. Learn more...

Coconino County Parks and Open Space Program. In 2002, we led a successful initiative helping to pass this program, which provided over $19M to acquire state lands around Flagstaff for open space purposes. The program opened up the possibility of receiving “Growing Smarter” matching funds to purchase eligible state lands, helping to create a pool of $38M for purchasing such lands for open space.

Flagstaff Regional Plan. For the Flagstaff area, identifying conservation lands for open space protection means following the Regional Land Use and Transportation Plan (Regional Plan). The Trust helped develop and pass this plan in a citywide vote in 2000.

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