Scottsdale Expands Preserve by 2,000 Acres

The city of Scottsdale acquired 2,000 acres of land for the Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve at a state land auction today. The city was the only bidder.

“Expanding Scottsdale’s McDowell Sonoran Preserve remains a priority for our citizens, and we are pleased to continue that commitment with today’s successful acquisition,” said Mayor W. J. “Jim” Lane. “This is a significant investment in Scottsdale’s quality of life, and the timing of this purchase is helping us get maximum value for our preservation dollars.”

The city’s successful bid was $ 44.1 million – approximately $22.05 million of that will come from a Growing Smarter State Trust Land Acquisition Grant, approved by the Arizona State Parks Board in September. The remainder of the purchase price will come from money generated by two dedicated sales taxes approved by Scottsdale voters in 1995 and 2004. The use of state grant funding frees additional dollars to be used on future purchases.

The preserve land acquired today includes rolling topography with exposed bedrock, boulder outcrops, steep slopes, Cone Mountain and upper Sonoran Desert vegetation with a number of washes housing abundant wildlife. The lands generally are located one mile north of Dynamite Boulevard, from the Dixileta alignment north one mile to the Lone Mountain alignment and from the 96th Street alignment east 4 ¼ miles to the 130th street alignment. It is within a “recommended study boundary” that includes all of the land targeted to be part of the preserve, permanently protecting the acreage from development.

A map of the acreage is available at

With today’s acquisition, Scottsdale will have acquired or protected approximately 18,000 acres for the preserve and has a long-range goal to expand the preserve to about 36,000 acres, nearly a third of the city’s land area.

Learn more about the Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve at


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