NewsOn6.com

SAND SPRINGS -- Sand Springs' Keystone Ancient Forest may suit the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department's need to preserve natural forest land in the state. The forest contains pristine oak and hickory forest that showcases the crosstimbers ecosystem that greeted European explorers. 

Sand Springs says the state has more resources to build trails and promote the forest. 

The Sand Springs City Council approved a resolution to enter into negotiations during its September 14 meeting.

Sand Springs officials have begun preliminary discussions with the OTRD to purchase the 1,360-acre forest preserve located between Prue Road and Lake Keystone.

If the sale is completed, the state would work with the city, The Nature Conservancy and other groups to develop and promote the property. The OTRD Board of Directors is expected to appropriate $169,000 as earnest money for a potential future purchase of the site during its September 16 meeting.

A final sale price would be negotiated after the property is appraised by the State. The $169,000 initial payment would be held in reserve pending the sale's conclusion.

After an appraisal, both sides will try to agree on a fair price.

Both parties have 30 days to void the sale discussions should satisfactory terms not be reached.