Hill Country Conservancy marshals public and private resources to preserve the natural areas and scenic vistas, aquifers and springs, rivers and streams, working farms and ranches, and the rural heritage of the Central Texas Hill Country for people to enjoy and cherish for generations to come.
VIOLET CROWN TRAIL: Connecting the Community to Nature
Every day more than 1000 hikers and bikers hit the Violet Crown Trail (VCT) for a day out in nature. The VCT is complete from Zilker Park to the 290 Trailhead at Brodie Lane and construction is underway to bring the trail to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. But our work isn't done, keeping the VCT open and beautiful takes the entire community. That's why your contribution is so important.
LAND CONSERVATION: preserving Austin & the Hill Country's unique quality of life now and for future generations
Some of the most important work we do isn't seen, but is important to our everyday life. HCC works every day to preserve - forever - large strategic tracts of open space that conserve critical water features, preserve outdoor recreation opportunities, and help maintain the Hill Country's unique quality of life. People - and companies - move here, and want to stay here, because it's a wonderful, beautiful place to be. The future economic success of Central Texas (and the Hill Country) is tied to how well we balance our growth and the preservation of precious natural resources.
Impact StatementHill Country Conservancy (HCC) works every day to preserve open space in the Barton Springs Edwards Aquifer region and Colorado River Basin of the Texas Hill Country.
HCC works to conserve the water quality and quantity of the Hill Country rivers and streams and preserve the working farms and ranches. This conservation work has a direct and positive impact on all citizens who depend on the Edwards Aquifer for their drinking water and on these farms and ranches for their food source.
HCC staff helps plan and implement statewide land trust conferences that educate land owners and other citizens throughout the Hill Country/Edwards Aquifer Region. Participants at these conferences also include landowners, land trust managers and government officials from Dallas, Houston, Lubbock, Tyler, and San Antonio.
HCC has taken the lead on the Violet Crown Trail, which once completed, will be a more than 30-mile trail system running from Zilker Park in the heart of Austin, all the way into rural areas of Hays County. The trail will be instrumental in providing healthy recreational opportunities to tens of thousands of Texans, helping to ensure better physical and mental health.This natural trail corridor will also help ensure clean air, water and wildlife habitat.
HCC is actively collaborating with decision-makers, other land trusts and trade organizations and public interest groups statewide to create the Texas Farm and Ranch Lands Conservation Advisory Council, which will create standards for and incentivize private lands preservation agreements.
HCC serves on the advisory council of the Texas Coalition for Conservation, which educates decision-makers statewide regarding the benefits of preserving Texas's natural ecology and recreational resources.
HCC is a member of the Texas Land Trust Council serving citizens across the state.
HCC conducts regular tours for scouts and other youth groups on its open space lands and teaches these young citizens best management practices for habitat restoration.
HCC implements comprehensive ecological restoration programs on its own and in partnerships with landowners and public agencies to ensure clean water and better air quality across the aquifer region.
Needs StatementDonations to HCC fund the labor that's needed to leverage public funds into successful conservation projects. Our staff of wildlife scientists, conservation professionals, and real estate experts help landowners, elected officials, and regional planners identify land for conservation projects. Then HCC works with these partners to shepherd the projects through to completion. We may not have a huge budget, but we're efficient and we're effective. Over the last decade, HCC has leveraged $600,000 in staff resources into conservation easements with an appraised value of more than $80,000,000!
Please make a tax-deductible gift today to help Hill Country Conservancy protect open space and the Texas Hill Country.
- Gary Farmer
(President, Heritage Title)
(Chair, Opportunity Austin Economic Development Initiative)
(Hill Country Conservancy, Founding Board of Directors)
Growth brings with it both good and bad. From an environmental standpoint, we felt that this countryside was too beautiful, too pristine to just see go unmanaged. The best way to help shape the future is to help create it. That's why I support and continue to support Hill Country Conservancy."
- Tom Meredith
(Co-founder and the Chairman of the Board of Managers, Meritage Capital)
(Former CEO, MFI Capital) (Former CFO, Dell)
(Hill Country Conservancy Supporter)
"Our property is but one piece of the larger effort by HCC to preserve and protect the beauty and values of open spaces. Our land contributes to the well-being of the Edwards Aquifer, of the wildlife that roams well beyond our property lines, of the agribusiness that is vital to the Texas economy, and of the scenic views all who pass by are able to enjoy. What HCC does to continually preserve more open spaces, and share links to resource management, makes our individual efforts seem worthwhile."
(Landowner and Rancher)
"The Hill Country Conservancy team has built a powerful, and achievable, vision for the strategic preservation of open space. They have accomplished this feat by creating an initiative that is fun and enlightening. The HCC team helped me understand that the rolling hills, bountiful creeks, groves of Cypress and wildlife can be preserved for all to enjoy."
- Matt Curtis
(Founding member of HCC's Emerging Professionals In Conservation (EPIC) group)
(Director of Government Relations, Home Away)
(Former Communications Director, Office of the Mayor, City of Austin)