Open Space Program
The Open Space Program is located in the Planning Department office in Town Hall, and is staffed by the Open Space Program Manager (currently vacant) , and Beth O'Connor the Open Space Stewardship Coordinator.
Telephone: 978-356-6607 Fax: 978-356-6682
Residents of Ipswich have long appreciated the beautiful landscapes, natural resources, and opportunities for outdoor recreation in town. Protecting these unique treasures from potential development on critical open space properties has been a priority for residents, and in 1994 the Open Space Committee was established to guide that commitment. Their focus was to develop plans and establish a program to protect open lands for both public enjoyment and important habitat values, which ultimately led to the creation of the Open Space Program.
The Open Space Program staff includes the Program Manager, who oversees aspects of the program related to land acquisitions and works closely with the Open Space Committee establishing policies and priorities related to land protection. The Program Manager is responsible for collaborating with a number of relevant Town boards and committees including the Planning Board, Conservation Commission, Board of Selectman, Agricultural Commission, and others that have a stake in the protection of Ipswich's natural and recreational resources. In addition, the Program Manager works closely with local, regional, and state organizations working on land protection projects in Ipswich.
Also on staff is the Stewardship Coordinator who addresses stewardship and land management needs of the Town's protected open space. The Stewardship staff works closely with the Conservation Commission and other Town entities that have care, custody and control of open space lands, and is assisted by an Americorp Land Steward; staff within the Parks and Cemeteries Division and Department of Public Works; and volunteers and outside organizations all involved in the use and management of open lands, particularly those with public access.