WXXI AM News

Tait family donates 177-acre Penfield estate to RIT

Dec 3, 2019

Credit RIT

Two well-known local real estate entrepreneurs are making a substantial gift of property to RIT.

Amy Leenhouts Tait and Robert Tait are giving the university their 177-acre property in Penfield, which includes a 60 acre lake and a private mile of Irondequoit Creek adjacent to Ellison Park.

RIT says it will use the property to expand research and educational offerings in areas that include sustainability and agriculture. It will be known as, “ The Tait Preserve of RIT,” and RIT President David Munson said that the property, “Will provide nearly endless possibilities for RIT and the broader community. “

A statement from RIT says that over the past four years, the Taits have worked to clean up the abandoned industrial site and restore its natural beauty, including the construction of a  luxury lodge.

“Bob and I are delighted that this property, which has special meaning to our family, will be loved and enjoyed for generations to come under the responsible stewardship of RIT,” Amy Tait said. “We are so inspired by RIT’s vision, which will benefit its constituents, the Penfield community, the broader region and potentially even the planet.”

RIT expects to use the property for activities that include environmental education and research, sustainable agriculture activities, youth recreation and events and hospitality community functions.