Trust Fund

On November 9th, 1989, the voters of Cape May County approved by a 2 - 1 margin a ballot question endorsing the establishment of a trust fund to preserve open space and agricultural land. The trust is funded by a County property tax of 1 cent per 100 dollars of assessed valuation and currently generates approximately 1.3 million dollars a year. Since its inception, the program has preserved approximately 4,000 acres of open space and farmland (almost 5 square miles).

Cape May County Creative Placemaking Plan

The Board of Chosen Freeholders is pleased to present you with the "Cape May County Creative Placemaking Plan".  This document, the result of a stakeholder-driven visioning process, provides partners in our Open Spaces Program with robust guidelines for use in designing projects for public spaces throughout Cape May County, using materials, patterns, colors, and other aesthetic elements derived from our natural and built environments.

Placemaking Plan


Beginning on January 1, 2013, the Open Space Program was expanded to include Park/Recreation Development and Historic Preservation Projects.

Map of County Open Space and Farmland Preservation

Farmland Easement Acquisition

For information on the Farmland Easement Acquisition application process and pending applications, contact Barbara Ernst at 609-465-1086 or email.

Farmland Preservation Program

For all other information on Farmland Preservation, including Right to Farm issues and information on existing preserved farms, contact Barbara Ernst at 609-465-1086 or email.

Open Spaces Program

• 2021 Program Guide (Coming Soon)

• 2021 Grant Program Updates and New Application Materials Requirements (Coming Soon)
     Example of Required Conceptual Plan (pages 112-113 of Creative Placemaking Plan) (Coming Soon)
     Example of Required Line Item Breakdown of Capital Costs (Coming Soon)

Land Acquisition Program

Historic Preservation Program

Park & Recreation Program
• Open Spaces Program Priorities Grant Program
     Recreational Trails Grant Application Form (Coming Soon)
     Coastal Recreation Enhancements Grant Application Form (Coming Soon)
     Creative Placemaking Implementation Grant Application Form (Coming Soon)
• Parks & Recreation Development Grant Application Form (Coming Soon)