In July, Brick Township and Ocean County closed on their joint purchase of a 31-acre property in Breton Woods. The purchase prevents the development of the heavily wooded site formerly owned by the Church of the Visitation. Texas-based developer D.R. Horton has been seeking approval from the Brick Planning Board to build 59 single-family homes on the parcel. The majority of the $8.55 million purchase price was made by the Ocean County Lands Trust and a state grant, leaving just over $500,000 to be paid by Brick Township.

“We needed to stop this project and we did. Housing on this site would have brought more traffic and more development. Preserving these 31 acres stops this unwanted large-scale development,” said Mayor Lisa Crate.

At a meeting on July 11, Mayor Crate announced that the Township received a $1.2 million grant from the New Jersey Green Acres Program towards the purchase and preservation of the property.

“When we first looked into purchasing Breton Woods, I knew it wouldn’t be fair to make Brick taxpayers pay almost $10 million for this property. We are pleased that the Ocean County Commissioners and the state provided most of the funding. Brick taxpayers will pay only $500,000 and that’s a great deal,” said Mayor Crate.

As part of the agreement, the property will be subdivided between the county and Brick Township. The township plans on building a playground on its portion of the property.

“This is an investment in our community’s future,” said Mayor Crate. “We are saving one of the largest remaining pieces of land in Brick Township, preventing additional development and traffic, and building a playground that will be enjoyed by young people for years to come.”