(CBS) — Cook County is laying out $14.5 million for a 400 acre horse farm, it’s largest land purchase in almost a half century.

Cook County Forest Preserve District General Superintendent Arnold Randall says Horizon Farm in Barrington puts together some large pieces of a puzzle.

“It is very close to two larger preserves that we currently hold in Spring Creek and Crabtree,” said Randall.

Randall says the land is currently adapted primarily for horses.

“It’s got tall grasses and grassland for birds which is obviously part of our mission to help create habitats for animals and wildlife,” said Randall.

Randall says the land will be closed for a site survey, then public hearings. He says there might be hiking or horseback riding, uses in keeping with returning the land to a more natural state in northwest suburban Barrington.