Land Donation Adds Another Piece of the Puzzle to Adams St Public Land

Contributed by Matt Hodgdon

If you look online at the map of the Holliston Town Forest on Adams St., it is mostly shaded green, indicating it is public forest or conservation land. For years in the middle of the forest there was a 22-acre parcel that appeared as a white rectangle because it was privately owned. Development on this parcel would be an interruption in the wildlife corridor and cause significant reduction in the recreation possibilities here. A recent generous private land donation to the Holliston Conservation Commission added these 22 acres to the over 500 acres of town-owned conservation land and Town Forest off Adams St. in Holliston. The owners of the property realize the importance this parcel has in this tract of forest and for all the people who will recreate in these woods for years to come.

Holliston’s protected land in this area, along with adjoining town-owned properties in Hopkinton and Milford, and a New England Mountain Bike Association-owned (but publicly accessible) property in Milford, is part of a large undeveloped area between Adams Street in Holliston, Route 495 in Milford, and Route 85 in Milford and Hopkinton. The area of approximately 2500 acres rivals some large State Forests and is considered the largest remaining piece of open space between Metrowest and Boston.

If you would like to explore the area, there are multiple access points, including Adams Street in Holliston and College Street in Hopkinton. The area is varied with a huge rock face popular with climbers, hill tops with exposed ledge and large boulders, and low vernal pools swimming with spring peeper frogs this time of year. The forest is relatively young with stone walls reminding visitors this once used to be pasture.

The donation of this parcel is a generous gift to the people of Holliston and comes at no expense to the taxpayer. Future generations will enjoy the property as a special place to recreate. Open space such as this also contributes to Holliston’s community character, and protects water resources, plant communities, and wildlife habitat.

Since its inception 20 years ago, Holliston’s Open Space Committee has worked with property owners to add over 400 additional acres to existing open space to existing open space throughout town, including the Fairbanks, Mellen Street, Warren Woods, and Adams Street Conservation Lands, and the Holliston Community Farm.

If you have a parcel of land that you think should be preserved as open space, please contact Lixy Carey, Chair of the Holliston Open Space Committee, at (508)429-4825. For correspondence send inquiries to: or to: Open Space Committee, ATTN: Lixy Carey, 703 Washington St., Holliston, MA, 01746.

The Publishers


  1. Shaw Lively on April 2, 2021 at 7:17 am

    We are fortunateto have protected open space and even more fortunate for families like this who add to it through donation.

  2. Mary Greendale on April 2, 2021 at 8:51 am

    Wonderful! Thanks to the efforts of a few generations of Open Space efforts, Holliston hit its goal (set in 1999) of having 25% of our land in open space. This acquisition is just another success story in a list of many. Thank you to this OS Committee and those who came before – with a special call-out to George Johnson, past chair, who led the charge for many years including the origi9nal acquisition in this area.

  3. Bobby Blair on April 2, 2021 at 10:11 am

    A huge thank you is due to Steve & Karen (Diani) Paul, both of whom grew up on Adams Street for the donation of the

  4. Karen Bachrach on April 2, 2021 at 12:14 pm

    What a wonderful gesture on the donor’s part. This news made my day.

  5. Susan Haley on April 2, 2021 at 4:23 pm

    Thank you to the generous donors!

  6. Fran Smith on April 4, 2021 at 5:26 pm

    Wow! Amazing selflessness with this donation and we will benefit for a very long time (and I thank you for covering the story).

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