Mercer County Superior Court Judge Paul Innes ruled on Friday the 225-acre Edinburg Village parcel, also known as Washington Woods, was a public use and permitted Robbinsville Township to post the verified appraisal amount with the court to obtain legal title to the property.
Robbinsville Mayor Dave Fried said he will dedicate the land to open space.
The township and Washington Woods, LLC are in negotiations regarding the final purchase price. Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes has pledged Robbinsville $2 million toward the acquisition.
Township residents voted on Nov. 8 in favor to increase the Open Space Tax levy by 1.5 cents for every $100 of assessed value in order to help purchase and preserve Edinburg Village/Washington Woods and the Miry Run Golf Course. The winning margin, including provisional ballots, was 4,609 to 2,457.
“This is a enormous win and a proud day for our town,” Fried said. “Raising taxes is never something I take lightly, and I would not have enlisted the support of township council, not to mention our residents, if we did not think this was absolutely the right thing to do. I am very confident this will save our taxpayers money down the road.”
The Edinburg Village property is adjacent to one of Mercer County’s agriculture project areas and is part of a swath of preserved farmland at the intersection of Robbinsville and West Windsor townships. It also is adjacent to land preserved by West Windsor to the west and across the street from a 153-acre farm preserved by Robbinsville.