68 U. Det. L. Rev. 193 (1990-1991)
Conservation Easements: Michigan's Land Preservation Tool of the 1990s

handle is hein.journals/udetmr68 and id is 203 raw text is: COMMENT
Conservation Easements: Michigan's Land
Preservation Tool of the 1990s*
When I was a little I used to think that no one should own the
waterfront, that everyone should have access to it. And back then
there was open space, people could get access to the water to party,
to picnic. That's not true anymore. Only my friends from the UP
[Michigan's Upper Peninsula] say they pretty much can go where
they want near the lake.'
Nancy Perry, a young woman who now lives with her family in a
beachfront home on northern Lake Michigan near Cross Village,
said these sentiments inspired her family2 to donate a conservation
easements to the Little Traverse Conservancy, a local land trust
based in Harbor Springs, Michigan, dedicated to protecting natural
land and open space in northern Michigan.4
The Perry donation was one of the first easements given to the
Little Traverse Conservancy in 1989 soon after the Conservancy ini-
tiated a conservation easement program.5 Since the start of the pro-
gram, ten easements have already been donated to the Conservancy
and over fifty northern Michigan landowners have made inquiries
about donating easements (as of late August, 1990).6
Conservation easements will soon be the premier land-conser-
vation tool in Michigan, Tom Bailey, Executive Director of the Lit-
* The author would like to thank Charles T. Harris, partner, Dickinson,
Wright, Moon, Van Dusen & Freeman; Elizabeth Harris, Executive Director, East
Michigan Environmental Action Council; Tom Bailey, Executive Director, Little
Traverse Conservancy; University of Detroit Law Review Editorial Staff; and
Professor Jacqueline Hand of the University of Detroit School of Law for their
1. Telephone interview with Nancy Perry, conservation easement donor (Aug.
27, 1990) [hereinafter Perry Interview].
2. Id.
3. The easement burdens an empty waterfront lot adjacent to the Perry home.
It insures the property will be preserved in its natural state, permits limited public
access, and allows the Perrys to retain fee ownership. Id.
NORTHERN MICHIGAN'S LAND TRUST (informational brochure).
5. Telephone interview with Tom Bailey, Executive Director, Little Traverse
Conservancy (July 24, 1990) [hereinafter Bailey Interview].
6. Telephone interview with Tom Bailey, Executive Director, Little Traverse
Conservancy (Aug. 23, 1990) [hereinafter Bailey Interview].

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