Oct 31, 2012 1:58 PM by Associated Press

Flagstaff buys Picture Canyon parcel

FLAGSTAFF - The city of Flagstaff has won a state land auction for a petroglyph-laden piece of property it has wanted to protect from development for 30 years.

The city won the auction for the Picture Canyon property near its wastewater treatment plant Tuesday. The Arizona Daily Sun reports the city was the sole bidder at the state Land Department auction and agreed to pay $4.8 million for the 480-acre parcel.

The canyon holds ancient petroglyphs and lush vegetation that hosts wildlife.

A small parcel just east of the city's treatment plant is considered suitable for development and was not included in the sale. Privately owned parcels with houses already border three sides of the environmentally sensitive tract that the city agreed to buy.

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