Flanders serves as the steward of 40 open space properties, totaling more than 2,000 acres, in Woodbury and surrounding towns, carefully managing the land usage to retain ecological habitats and ensure that the open space is enhanced for future generations.
After acquiring land, in its role as steward, Flanders must manage and monitor the properties to preserve their natural beauty and care for the system as a whole, through astute land-use practices. This not only involves the greater mission of looking after the natural biological diversity of the ecosystems, but also the day-to-day tasks of maintaining the physical attributes of the land. For example, Flanders is responsible for the grooming of existing trails and construction of new ones; creation of special paths and “natural corners”; or the maintenance of structures on various properties to prevent them from falling into disrepair. In short, Flanders oversees the health of the nature preserves, ensuring that woodlands, lakes and trails remain open for everyone to enjoy.