January 27, 2017

The Bridges Foundation

Turner, Oregon

The Bridges Foundation

After visiting the property, Craft3 recognized the opportunity to help The Bridges Foundation expand its conservation work. It provided a loan through the Conservation Bridge Fund to secure the 80-acre property.
Established in 1987, The Bridges Foundation engages in a variety of activities centered on ecosystem protection and habitat restoration. Kathy Bridges, executive director and trustee, oversees the foundation’s work with her three sons. Based at Santiam Valley Ranch, the family now owns 320 acres of current and former farmlands.

Near the end of 2016, Kathy’s son, Luke, learned of a unique piece of property east of the ranch. The 80-acre property was part pasture and part mature oak forest, with the treed portion in a surprisingly native state. The owner was getting ready to retire and thought he had found a buyer, but the deal fell apart. Happy to have a 2nd chance at purchasing the property, Kathy and Luke set out to secure financing, but at the last minute the bank decided it wouldn’t make the loan.

Kathy called Kelley Beamer, executive director of the Coalition of Oregon Land Trusts (COLT), looking for a program or lender they hadn’t already tried. That’s when she learned about Craft3.

After visiting the property, Craft3 recognized the opportunity to help The Foundation expand its conservation work. Helping secure and preserve such a rare pocket of habitat, simply to let it be, is a type of investment that few traditional lenders would ever risk. It’s exactly the kind of project Craft3 looks for and is proud to support.

Since 2012, Craft3 and Meyer Memorial Trust have partnered in a groundbreaking way to offer Conservation Bridge Fund loans to acquire sensitive lands, restore habitat and protect water quality.

Learn more at The Bridges Foundation at www.thebridgesfoundation.info.