D&R Greenway Land Trust
Johnson Education Center opened in 2006

About the Johnson Education Center

The Johnson Education Center - An Innovative and Unique Resource for the Land Preservation Community

A model of adaptive reuse, the Johnson Education Center was created through the renovation of a barn constructed circa 1900, on the lower farm of Princeton’s 275 acre Edgerstoune Estate.  The 60-acres surrounding the Johnson Education Center later became the grounds of the Robert Wood Johnson Estate.  This land was preserved by D&R Greenway and partners in 2001 and now serves as its central headquarters for land preservation and stewardship work.

The only resource of its kind in the state and one of only two in the country, the Johnson Education Center encompasses the tools, techniques and expertise our public and private partners need to help them preserve as much land as possible, as quickly as possible.  The Johnson Education Center provides a focal point for the development of a regional vision for land preservation; a place where municipalities, counties, non-profit organizations and individuals can come together to devise a holistic approach leading to landscape-scale preservation efforts.

A view inside the Johnson Education Center from the Olukotun Preservation Bridge
Celebrate Open Space is an annual event to raise funds and awareness for preserving land in Central New Jersey

Opened in April 2006, the Johnson Education Center serves as a venue for lectures, panel discussions and professional workshops designed to raise awareness about the importance of protecting land and our environment, and the local, regional and even global benefits of doing so.  Through activities at the Johnson Education Center, D&R Greenway works to promote a sustainable conservation ethic that results in a public commitment to land preservation.  

The indoor and outdoor spaces of the Johnson Education Center are available for rental by non-profit, educational and community groups.  The gallery spaces at the Johnson Education Center provide many opportunities for artists of all ages to celebrate the beauty of the natural world. 

D&R Greenway strives to reduce, reuse and recycle in all aspects of its operations. Learn about "Green Features" of the Johnson Education Center (Click to open document).

Gardens and Outdoor Spaces

Top left photo: Meredith's Garden was established in honor of Meredith Peterson, a dedicated mother, friend, wife and philanthropist, who passed away in 2006 after a four-year battle with cancer. See article about Meredith in New Jersey Monthly.

Top right photo: Kids enjoy the pathway lined with grand Sycamore trees at Greenway Meadows. On October 17, 2010 the Scott and Hella McVay Poetry Trail opened along this Sycamore Allee. The poetry trail, featuring 48 separate poems inspired by nature, meanders through Greenway Meadows. There are benches and scenic vistas along the way to enjoy.
A glimpse of Meredith's Garden in early autumn Kids enjoying Greenway Meadows in the spring

Click here to Visit the Native Plant Nursery

L-R: A view of Greenway Meadows it the summer while artists paint plein-air. During D&R Greenway's 20th Anniversary, beautiful artwork was offered on a silent auction to raise money for land preservation and stewardship. The photo above shows Tom and Lynn Ebeling, land stewards, viewing the art.

Plein-Air Artists at Greenway Meadows in late summer 2009 Lynn and Tom Ebeling, Land Stewards, view art on the silent auction at D&R Greenway's 20th anniversary

History of Greenway Meadows and the Johnson Education Center

In 2001, D&R Greenway led the preservation of the 60-acre Robert Wood Johnson
Greenway Meadows under a blanket of snow
Greenway Meadows in winter
estate. When completed, 55 acres were deeded to Princeton Township, creating Greenway Meadows park. The remaining acres surrounded a circa 1900 barn. D&R Greenway retained this land, renovated the barn, and in 2006 opened the Johnson Education Center. The Johnson Education Center provides a focal point for the implementation of D&R Greenway's regional vision for land preservation. Here, state, county, and municipal officials, non-profit organizations, individuals and landowners work with us to formulate approaches to landscape-scale preservation projects that benefit communities throughout our region.

D&R Greenway recognized families that preserved their farms from Salem County at the D&R Greenway Gala in September 2010. Shown above are members of the Carpenter, Sparks, and Seabrook families, Mannington officials, D&R Greenway Staff and Board members. The Donald B. Jones Award is an annual award given to an individual or group of individuals who have demonstrated dedication and service toward the environment and the preservaiton of open space. In September 2009, US Representative Rush Holt was the honored recipient of the award.
The 2010 recipients of the Donald B. Jones Awards

The center is also a venue for professional workshops and public programs covering a range of topics relevant to land preservation and stewardship. D&R Greenway's presenting partners include the Garden State Preservation Trust and the Princeton Environmental Institute. Art inspired by nature is exhibited in the center's Marie L. Matthews Gallery and children's art in the Olivia Rainbow Gallery.

All activities at the center are designed to raise awareness about the importance of protecting land and the local, regional, and even global benefits of doing so. We hope to inspire a conservation ethic that results in an increased public commitment to land preservation and stewardship.

D&R Greenway Land Trust’s mission is to preserve and protect a permanent network of natural lands and open spaces, creating and extending Greenways – unbroken chains of preserved land surrounding stream corridors, headwaters, water recharge areas and significant ecosystems.   

Johnson Education Center received the highest award in the Bucks County AIA 2007 Design Awards competition held in September 2007
. FORD3 ARCHITECTS was given the 2007 Honor Award for the architecture of the Johnson Education Center. Comments from the jury include: "A well crafted adaptive reuse of the historic barn. The architects went to great pains to work with the existing structure and to expose as much of the existing barn structure as possible while creating new functional spaces. The end result is a project that really fits the site context."

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