PATTEN, Maine — The National Park Service has received $380,000 in federal funding to buy two tracts of land in a potential expansion of the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, agency officials said.
The national monument is among 46 projects across the U.S. getting a share of $125 million that Congress approved earlier this year for water and land conservation, the Portland Press Herald reported.
Tim Hudson, Katahdin Woods and Waters’ superintendent with the National Park Service, told the newspaper that negotiations will soon start with land owners who had previously signaled a willingness to sell to the federal government.
If acquired, the tracts of land would add an estimated 3,000 acres to the 87,500-acre national monument. The expansion would connect parts of the monument that are now separated and would add snowmobile trails that could be used by wintertime visitors.
The U.S. Department of the Interior said the acquisition would “provide enhanced recreational opportunities for visitors to enjoy.” The funding was provided through the Great American Outdoors Act, which was signed by President Donald Trump in August.
The national monument is located near Baxter State Park and was established in 2016.