In February 2006, the City of Raleigh received an amazing gift of 157 acres of land along Falls Lake to create its first designated nature preserve. Dr. Annie Louise Wilkerson, a renowned Raleigh doctor with many pioneering achievements in her 53-year career in medicine, stipulated in her will that the park be maintained as a "nature preserve park" used for the primary purpose of nature and wildlife education.
Phase One of park development has been completed and consists of a park preserve office, an educational shelter and restrooms. The restrooms utilize an innovative water conservation and re-use system. One of the existing residences on the park was re-purposed into the park office, which has a small solar array, car charging station and permeable parking area. In the future, Dr. Annie's former residence will be converted into a visitor center with indoor classrooms and exhibits. The nature preserve consists of oak-hickory forest and open fields that will be maintained as Piedmont prairie. Three farm ponds and five perennial streams shelter various aquatic species.
The park is unique in that it is set aside for the sole purpose of helping visitors connect with nature through programs, hikes and self study. The park will be managed to preserve existing natural communities and native species.