Remember the $10M Penfield home? It’s been donated to RIT

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PENFIELD, N.Y. (WROC) — Over the summer, and again in the fall, News 8 toured a home that was for sale in Penfield. The reason? It was listed for $10 million, which caught the eyes of many throughout the region.

But now the house is off the market, and not because it was bought, but because it was donated to RIT.

The Penfield property on Old Quarry Lane will be the future home of the Tait Preserve of RIT and Leenhouts Lodge, and will offer research opportunities in ecology, agriculture, sustainability and other fields.

Past coverage

The 177-acre property, which includes a 60-acre lake and a private mile of Irondequoit Creek next to Ellison Park, was gifted by Amy and Robert Tait.

“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 in apress release. “We are so inspired by RIT’s vision, which will benefit its constituents, the Penfield community, the broader region and potentially even the planet.”

The property is about 10 minutes from downtown Rochester, and 25 minutes from RIT’s Henrietta campus, but it seems like its in a world all of its own when you’re on the property.

According to then-listing agent, Dick Garth, the property is now home to around a dozen species of fish in the 60-acre lake, a dozen species of birds, and deer and other mammals.

“The Tait Preserve’s local field sites will be highly advantageous for our environmental science and biology programs,” said Sophia Maggelakis, dean of RIT’s College of Science in a press release. “Exclusive and protected access to the property is particularly valuable, as it will give access of the available field sites to our faculty and undergraduate and graduate students to work on research projects in a number of areas such as ecology, agricultural biotechnology, wildlife management, plant biology, wetland biogeochemistry and geographic information systems, just to name a few.”

RIT officials say this is the second major gift the Taits have made to university. The former Rochester Savings Bank building, located at 40 Franklin St., was donated to RIT in 2012 by Amy and Robert Tait through Rochester Historic Ventures. The building, now called the RIT Downtown Center for Entrepreneurship, is home to RIT’s Center for Urban Entrepreneurship.

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