Cape Cod Hospital Announces Plan To Restore Bayview Bog

YARMOUTH – Cape Cod Hospital recently announced that the state Division of Ecological Restoration has designated “Bayview Bog” as a priority project for ecological restoration and that the site will soon undergo a comprehensive assessment on ways to return it to its natural state.

The Cape Cod Conservation District (CCCD) is partnering with Cape Cod Hospital as the lead entity on the project, one of nine Priority Ecological Restoration Projects statewide and one of five located on the cape.

The 89-acre area includes 50 acres of upland that was previously used for growing cranberries from the late 1800s to late 1990s but has since become overgrown with invasive vegetation preventing public use.

The parties involved hope to create a healthy ecosystem which will serve both to protect the region’s fragile coastline and offer hospital patients a peaceful space for recovery.

“We are very excited to partner with the Conservation District and with our community to create a project that will not only help restore the original state of the land to its natural habitat, but also provide incredible opportunity for our patients, visitors and community to witness the transformation and eventually be able to experience and enjoy the sea,” said Michael Lauf, President and CEO of Cape Cod Healthcare.

The CCCD will meet with stakeholders in the area including neighbors, the Town of Yarmouth, and the Yarmouth Conservation Trust throughout the assessment process, which is estimated to last one to two years.

Other projects on the Cape include cranberry bog restorations along the Bass and

Marstons Mills Rivers and a pair of projects on Chatham to restore the natural tidal exchange in the Frost River Creek Estuary and restore the estuarine habitat in Ryder’s Cove.

“We have to address the legacy impacts of farming that continue to affect the landscape after farming stops. By filling ditches, removing small dams, uncompacting the sand layers, we can set the stage for the ecosystem to heal itself,” said Jessica Cohn, ecological restoration specialist for the DER’s Cranberry Bog Programs.

“I see a future healthy wetland full of life and diversity, with walking trails, that is an important neighborhood amenity, as well as a quiet place for healing next to the hospital,” said Cohn. Although the area includes several buildable lots, there are currently no plans to use the land for construction or expansion.
Cape Cod Healthcare is preparing to launch a webpage dedicated to the Bayview Bog Restoration to allow public input on the project.

By, Matthew Tomlinson, NewsCenter

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