Greenbelt currently holds 249 conservation restrictions over 7,786 acres throughout Essex County. A conservation restriction is a perpetual easement that protects the conservation values of the affected land by limiting the type and scope of activities allowed.
Staff members at Greenbelt conduct routine monitoring visits to properties with conservation restrictions to ensure ongoing compliance with the terms of a restriction.
A monitoring visit consists of coordination with a landowner, a site visit to the restricted property entailing a walk of the property and photo documenting existing conditions, and generating a monitoring report both for Greenbelt's and the landowner's records.
Some conservation restrictions can be subdivided and have multiple landowners owning portions of the restricted area. Greenbelt treats each landowner in these instances as a separate monitoring visit.
In 2021, Greenbelt visited 128 unique conservation restrictions, and with subdivisions, conducted 180 monitoring visits across these restrictions.