The New Jersey Audubon Society (NJAS) and the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) have decided that the Weis Ecology Center property located off Snake Den Road will be allowed to return to its natural state. NJAS has formally applied to make a gift of the 160-acre parcel to the DEP’s Division of Parks and Forestry, which the state is prepared to accept, contingent upon the decommissioning of facilities on the site.
DEP spokesman Larry Hajna told Suburban Trends that the decision to accept the property from NJAS on those terms was made “sometime in the spring,” although he didn’t offer a specific date.
Hajna’s Oct. 3 statement confirmed that the officials from NJAS and the DEP had been on a walk-through of the property several months ago.
“Following a thorough site inspection,” Hajna said, “we determined that the buildings and related infrastructure were not safe for continued visitor use. The area will be restored to natural habitat.”
Hikers and outdoor enthusiasts will still be able to access trails in Norvin Green State Park via Weis, according to Hajna.
“We plan to retain the two existing parking lots and use the bulk of the property as passive open space and trails,” he added.