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Local public bodies purchasing Jones Farm in Sussex County

Sussex County

Public entities in southern Delaware are preserving nearly 40 acres just outside of Lewes. 

Sussex County, the City of Lewes and the Lewes Board of Public Works are acquiring the historic Jones Farm, at the corner of Kings Highway and Clay Road. 

The 37.5-acre mix of agricultural and forested lands is going for $5.5 million - down from an appraised $7.1 million. The property owner is J.G. Townsend, Jr. & Co.

The land is an aquifer recharge area and next to the city wells. 

The Board of Public Works plans to erect a water tower on the property, and County Councilman I.G. Burton says a walking or biking path may be added as well. 

“You could essentially go from one side of Lewes to the other side of Lewes—to New Road—without having to go out onto Kings Highway and down,” said Burton.   

The county’s $2 million portion of the purchase came from a tax on development density in other parts of Sussex. 

Burton says land preservation is a priority as the county becomes more developed.

“We must look at preserving strategic land within the county,” he said. “And this one was very strategic, because [of] the wells and [sic] the development that’s coming around Lewes.”   

All parties on the deal have signed a letter of intent, with a finalized deal expected this fall.

Burton says more county land purchases will be announced soon.

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