Land Access & Pathways to Ownership
Demand for land continues to outstrip supply and Fondy is working with partners to develop strategies to meet that demand. In addition to working with Mequon Nature Preserve (MNP), Fondy is engaged in an innovative partnership with the Land Trust Alliance, Ozaukee Washington Land Trust, Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewage District, and others, to explore pathways to ownership for socially disadvantaged farmers. The goal is to connect small farmers with access to land, while preserving farmland for future generations, and utilizing sustainable farming techniques to improve water quality and run off in the Milwaukee River watershed. Fondy and our partners have identified more than 32 farmers that have expressed interest in land ownership as well as a parcel of land that meets their requirements for farming, proximity to the City of Milwaukee, and conservation and watershed funding. Divergent land ownership models and financing structures are being explored. The land has just come under contract with the OWLT and the partners are now in phase 2 of project planning with farmers and funders.