Mission & History


The East Cooper Land Trust is a community-supported organization devoted to conserving natural spaces, thus the quality of life for current and future generations.


The East Cooper Land Trust will be leading the most important and ambitious conservation effort for the East Cooper area. We will:

  • Identify and conserve natural spaces of environmental, cultural or historical value.
  • Enrich our urban community with natural spaces and preserve the rural character of surrounding coastal communities.
  • Collaborate with other organizations to provide natural lands such as parks, gardens and trails for people to enjoy.
  • Provide education about the benefits of open space and conservation for all ages.

As a non-profit, non-political organization serving communities between the Cooper and Santee Rivers, we rely on your financial support to sustain and expand our efforts.

Policy Statement

The ECLT serves the community by conserving precious natural resources and quality of life.

The Trust seeks opportunities to establish conservation easements within rural or developed areas. Our approach is one of collaboration and cooperation, and we are neither a proponent nor an opponent of development.

The Trust encourages land use policies that protect culturally significant or ecologically sensitive areas, provide parks and usable open space, support the Urban Growth Boundary, and align with "smart growth" principles.


We began with a challenge. Can the East Cooper area continue to grow and develop while maintaining the same quality of life elements responsible for this prosperity and interest? With this question in mind, a concept for a land preservation program was proposed by the Town of Mount Pleasant itself. The Mount Pleasant MPOSF-old.jpgOpen Space Foundation was created by the Town in 2002 and received non-profit status in 2004. Considerable municipal funding was initially dedicated by the Town of Mount Pleasant to secure a successful foundation for our land trust. As the organization evolved, Town funds were decreased and we naturally strove toward self-sufficiency.

In July 2009 the Town of Mount Pleasant passed a resolution authorizing and acknowledging the independence of the MPOSF. In September 2009 we changed our name to the Mount Pleasant Land Conservancy, after which we have been an independent, 501(c)(3) urban land trust, supported entirely by individual/business donations, grants, sponsorships, and special events.

During the summer of 2013 after an intensive visioning and strategic planning process, we redefined our geographic scope to the areas between the Cooper and Santee Rivers. To match this larger scope, on September 1st 2013 we became the East Cooper Land Trust.