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Forterra, King County, Seattle Foundation join forces to conserve rural park land


Anonymous donor bequeaths $392,000 to Seattle Foundation to secure parks lands for open space, passive recreation and wildlife habitat in King County.


Forterra, King County and Seattle Foundation announce a major bequest thatforterra_logo will be used to conserve important lands and enhance recreation opportunities in south King County.

A philanthropist left an anonymous gift in their will of $392,000 to Seattle Foundation to seattle_foundationsecure park lands in King County. Seattle Foundation turned to Forterra, who in turn worked with King County, to help identify locations that would fulfill the donor’s wish of saving beautiful open spaces for the public to enjoy.

“Thanks to this generous donation, our unique partnership is able to preserve important south King County wildlife habitat for everyone to experience and enjoy,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine.

The County has been leading acquisition efforts on several south King County parcels which have been prioritized through the Conservation Futures and Parks Levy funding process.

The first parcel purchased is a five-acre addition to the 925-acre complex of public lands at Spring Lake-Lake Desire Park, located south of Renton and east of Kent. The parcel contains a portion of Peterson Creek, which flows to the Cedar River. The site is part of an effort to expand trail connections at Spring Lake-Lake Desire Park.

The bequest was formalized and celebrated at a King County Council meeting on Monday, Aug. 15.

“Investments in these properties not only protects important habitat and passive recreation, but embodies the spirit of the 100-year Cascade Agenda and Forterra’s mission as a sustainability organization and regional land trust,” said Gene Duvernoy, Forterra president.

“This is an ideal partnership that furthers Seattle Foundation’s focus on environmental equity and open space for all,” said Tony Mestres, president and CEO of Seattle Foundation. “We worked with Forterra to fulfill the philanthropist’s desire to create a long and lasting legacy in their hometown, at a time when preservation of greenspace is more critical than ever.”

More parkland conservation projects are currently in negotiations.

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Forterra secures and cares for keystone lands – places that will play a vital role in our region’s long-run livability, sustainability and social equity. Read more about Forterra’s work at

Seattle Foundation ignites powerful, rewarding philanthropy to make Greater Seattle a stronger, more vibrant community for all. Focused on creating equity and opportunity, our goal as a community foundation is to simplify giving and strengthen the impact of philanthropy for the more than 1,200 individuals, families, businesses and nonprofits we serve.  We provide deep community insights, powerful civic leadership, effective philanthropic advising and judicious stewardship of assets in support of our mission.  In addition, Seattle Foundation annually presents GiveBIG, a 24-hour online giving event to raise funds for area nonprofit organizations.  Learn more at:

King County Parks - Your Big Backyard - offers more than 200 parks and 28,000 acres of open space, including such regional treasures as Marymoor Park and Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, 175 miles of regional trails, 215 miles of backcountry trails and a world-class aquatic center. By cultivating strong relationships with non-profit, corporate and community partners, King County Parks enhances park amenities while reducing costs.