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Public Statement - Carefree Highlands LLC Property

The Land Trust’s primary goal is the preservation of land, and that continues to be our goal relating to the Carefree Highlands Property. We intend to take any action we deem appropriate for an organization such as the DFLT to ensure this property is forever preserved.

Significant cultural resources, desert washes that serve as travel ways for our wildlife and of course, incredible views have made this a priority area for the land trust. Our work in this area dates back many years, however we made significant strides in 2012, working with the Town of Carefree as well as landowners, when together we were able to combine both purchase and donations of land that resulted in the permanent protection of 60 acres just north of the Carefree Highlands Property. The Desert Foothills Land Trust’s vision is to make this area North and East of Grapevine Wash a focus of our ongoing preservation efforts. Of course our success will be, in great measure, dependent upon you, our neighbors.

In 2016, we attempted to purchase 85 acres of the Carefree Highlands Property, but unfortunately, we were outbid by the current owner.

We work with private landowners, developers, towns and neighborhoods to accomplish our goals. Since our founding in 1991, we have permanently protected nearly 700 acres in the communities of Cave Creek, Carefree, New River and North Scottsdale; The Jewel of the Creek, The Cave of Cave Creek, Go John Canyon and Carefree Heritage Preserve are a few of our success stories.

The Trust’s roles are to identify lands worthy of preservation, negotiate with landowners to determine the best course for permanent protection, raise money where needed to purchase the property and to serve as guardians of these lands. After we successfully acquire land, we serve as stewards to assure donors and the community at large that the land will be forever protected.

It is our intention to work with residents and neighbors, the Town of Carefree and the landowner to achieve our goal of forever protecting this property.

We have been asked, “Why aren’t we going to join the neighbors to protest this zoning application?” It is because we believe it’s the role of citizens to let their wishes be known directly to those they elect. The role of the Land Trust is to work with those who own the land - to use all the tools available to us to promote the preservation of as much sensitive land as possible. We will continue to work with this community, with the town government and with the landowner as such assistance fits into our mission.

- Board of Directors, Desert Foothills Land Trust

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