Support from the Land for Maine’s Future program enabled the Town of Brunswick to more than double the amount of contiguous open space in and around its Town Commons, a parcel of land with great historic and recreational importance to local residents. Only 71 acres of the Town’s original “commonage” created in 1719 remain in a natural state (much of it having been taken by eminent domain in the 1940s for the Brunswick Naval Air Station). The surrounding open space has been densely developed, resulting in diminished wildlife habitat, disrupted wetlands, and curtailed access to traditional trails. The Town’s acquisition helps to mitigate those effects by protecting more than 100 acres along the only remaining trail in the vicinity, which extends from the Bowdoin College athletic fields through the Town Commons and on to Middle Bay. This undeveloped land will help to buffer The Commons so that its wild character is not diminished by nearby construction.
Residents frequently walk, run and ski in The Commons, stopping to pick blueberries, watch wildlife, and appreciate the rare pitch pine and heath barrens. Now they can go for longer outings along a trail corridor that is well-maintained, wide and level – making it appropriate for people of all ages and varying abilities. The Town plans to construct additional side trails and provide ongoing ranger patrols and maintenance.
In addition to its recreational offerings, this greenway provides a valuable wildlife corridor in an increasingly built-out area, with habitat for deer, fox, and moose as well as amphibians that reside in the forested wetlands and vernal pools.
Southern Maine – York, Cumberland
Directions from nearest town
DeLorme Maine Atlas and Gazetteer Map 6, C-3. Going south on Maine Street in Brunswick, bear left onto Bath Road just after the First Parish Church. At the first traffic light, turn right onto Harpswell Road/Route 123. Go 1.6 miles to the Town Commons entrance gate on the right. Parking is available in front of the gate.