Indexed News on:

--the California "Mega-Park" Project

Tracking measurable success on efforts around the state to preserve and connect our Parks & Wildlife Corridors



WE POST NEWS THREE WAYS:
1. long detailed stories on blogspot (here!)
2. short messages on Twitter
3. automated news feeds from CA enviro websites in the right-hand column which change frequently and are not archived by our website (that's why we now have a twitter account to permanently capture the memorable feeds)

Saturday, May 7, 2016

In the Works:

Big Additions to LA's Circle of Parks

SUMMARY:
--Over 400 acres in Chatsworth trail corridor-a purchase
--1280 acres in Soledad Canyon--donated
--37 acres in East side of Topanga
--40 acres in Liberty canyon, north of Malibu Creek state park
 and more


(Taken from agendas of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy and the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority from 1/6/16 to 5/4/16)


IN ABOVE MAP: Proposed purchases are in green outline


SIMI HILLS/SANTA SUSANA PASS

acquisition of 30 acre Woolsey Canyon Creek property, Chatsworth area. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment ] [Map] SMMC 3/28/2016

Woolsey Canyon – Simi Hills acquisition project, 30 ACRES AND 18 ACRES. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map 1] [Map 2] MRCA 2/3/2016

371 acres total, Joncich and WG Realty parcels: grant of mitigation funds to the Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District for the acquisition of APNs 646-0-170-040 and 649-0-010-415, Simi Hills, unincorporated Ventura County. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016

acquisition of APN 2723-001-001 (4.47 acres) in the Santa Susana Pass using mitigation funding and acceptance of private and public funding for said acquisition, Chatsworth area. Negotiators: Joseph T. Edmiston; David Seror; Jessica L. Bagdanov, and Nancy Zamora.. Under consideration: price and terms. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map ] MRCA 3/2/2016

BOX CANYON:
acquisition of APN 2017-005-033 totaling approximately 18.43 acres in Box Canyon, Chatsworth, City of Los Angeles. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 11/4/2015
 
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SANTA MONICA MOUNTAINS-WEST AND VENTURA COUNTY:


ARROYO SEQUIT CREEK:

POSSIBLE ACQUISITION – 45 acre Camp Bloomfield/Arroyo Sequit Creek project: unincorporated Los Angeles County. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Map] SMMC 3/28/2016 [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment ] [Map] MRCA 2/3/2016

20 acres west side of Little Sycamore Canyon road: acceptance of a donation of APNs 4472-005-011 and 012, each approximately 10 acres, in the Arroyo Sequit watershed, unincorporated Los Angeles County. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016



TOPANGA:

acquisition of approximately 6.28-acre parcel APN 4448-018-018 (1809 Tuna Canyon Road), adjacent Rocky Ledge, in the Topanga Canyon Watershed, unincorporated County of Los Angeles. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Map 1] [Map 2] MRCA 4/6/2016

acquisition of up to 37.05 acres comprised of all or portions of APNs 4434-008-007 and 4434-001-004 including conservation easement interests, and entering into necessary agreements with the owner to cover various pre-acquisition costs, Topanga Canyon watershed, unincorporated Los Angeles County. Negotiators: Joseph T. Edmiston and Tom Steers. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016

acceptance of a donation of an approximately 0.21-acre property (APN 2072-026-009), Old Topanga Canyon Road, City of Calabasas. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016



PUERCO CANYON TRAIL AND CAMPGROUND DESIGN PROJECT, 703 ACRES:
[Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment ] MRCA 2/3/2016contract with Geosyntec Consultants, Inc. for engineering services for the Puerco Canyon project. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment ] MRCA 5/4/2016
contract with Mia Lehrer + Associates for design services for the Puerco Canyon project. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment ] MRCA 5/4/2016
Coastal Camping at Puerco Canyon program. [Staff Report] [Resolution] MRCA 5/4/2016



LIBERTY CANYON:

habitat restoration both on and off Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority property in the 101 freeway corridor (both sides) at Liberty Canyon, City of Agoura Hills. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 4/6/2016

acquisition of APN 2063-048-011, a 40-acre property in Liberty Canyon, Agoura Hills.
[Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 4/6/2016
[Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] SMMC 4/25/2016

acquisition of APN 2064-006-001 (approximately 0.27 acres), Liberty Canyon at 101 freeway, City of Agoura Hills. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016


HIDDEN VALLEY:
comment letter to Ventura County, Major Modification of Planned Development Permit No. LU08-0133, 2701 White Stallion Road, Hidden Valley. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment] [Map] SMMC 1/11/2016

YERBA BUENA ROAD,
70 acres: comment letter to Ventura County on Case No. Pl 16-0006, 9899 Yerba Buena, unincorporated Ventura County. [Comment Letter] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Attachment 3] [Map 1] [Map 2] [Map 3] [Resolution] SMMC 2/22/2016


LADYFACE MOUNTAIN,
7 acres: comment letter to the City of Agoura Hills on Mitigated Negative Declaration for proposed Ladyface Mountain Senior Apartments project, VTTM 71742, 30800 Agoura Road. [Comment Letter] [Resolution] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Map]

FROM TOPANGA TO LEO CARRILLO:
project planning and design work on Malibu coastal trail and access projects, City of Malibu and unincorporated Los Angeles County. [Staff Report] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Attachment 3] [Map] SMMC 4/25/2016 [Staff Report] [Map] MRCA 4/6/2016


acceptance of an additional easement over a portion of the property located at 22548 Pacific Coast Highway, City of Malibu. [Staff Report] MRCA 1/6/2016, REMOVED FROM AGENDA

SWEETWATER MESA:
acceptance of a trail easement at 3093 Sweetwater Mesa Road on portions of APNs 4452-025-025 and 4453-005-089, City of Malibu and unincorporated Los Angeles County. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 1/6/2016

acceptance of trail easement at 27865 Winding Way (APN 4467-005-007), City of Malibu. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment ] [Map ] MRCA 3/2/2016

BIG ROCK BEACH:
beach access project at 20516 Pacific Coast Highway, City of Malibu. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map 1] [Map 2] MRCA 4/6/2016

FROM TOPANGA TO ZUMA:
acceptance of the offers to dedicate scenic easements associated with Coastal Development Permit No. 5-91-755 (Preferred Financial), incorporated and unincorporated Malibu. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016

CARBON CANYON:
acquire Carbon Canyon Creek parcels, unincorporated Los Angeles County. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016


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SANTA MONICA MOUNTAINS-IN LA CITY

CAHUENGA PASS:
acceptance of a donation in fee of APN 5549-003-010, approximately 0.44 acres. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map 1] [Map 2] MRCA 4/6/2016

CAHUENGA PASS:
Exchange of up to a total one-acre combination of APNs 2428-028-900 and 5549-001-900 and additional road easement for APN 5549-001-001 (4.53-acres) for habitat linkage purposes [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016

LAUREL CANYON:
acquire a Laurel Canyon spring parcel, City of Los Angeles. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016

STUDIO CITY/COLDWATER CANYON:
comment letter to the City of Los Angeles on the Recirculated Draft Environmental Impact Report for the Harvard-Westlake School project. [Comment Letter] [Resolution] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Attachment 3] [Attachment 4] SMMC 3/28/2016

STUDIO CITY/COLDWATER CANYON:
sale of an approximately 0.15 acre portion of APN 2385-018-904 and retaining a conservation and trail easement over all of said portion; 12899 W. Mulholland Drive, City of Los Angeles. Negotiators: Joseph T. Edmiston and Moe Hayat. Under consideration: price and terms. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016

HOLLYWOOD HILLS:
acceptance of conservation easement(s) over portions of APN 5572-002-005 (2745 and 2755 Outpost Drive), approximately 0.33 acres total, Mulholland Scenic Corridor, City of Los Angeles. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment] [Map] MRCA 4/6/2016

BILLIONAIRE BUYS 292 or 450 ACRES ALONG 405 FREEWAY


WOODLAND HILLS:
Operation and maintenance of a new open space area at the Girard Reservoir [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 4/6/2016


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SANTA SUSANA MOUNTAINS

CHATSWORTH-NORTH OF 118 FREEWAY:
agreement with Forestar Chatsworth LLC (Deerlake Ranch project) to: (a) provide various temporary and permanent easements on adjacent Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority (MRCA) Deerlake Highlands parcels; (b) conduct oak tree mitigation on adjacent MRCA property; (c) accept funding for various purposes, and (d) accept the dedication of the following eighteen parcels totaling over one acre (APNs 2819-003-001; 2819-003-005; 2819-003-006; 2819-003-007; 2819-004-030; 2818-009-032; 2818-004-053; 2818-004-054; 2818-005-003; 2818-005-014; 2818-006-007; 2818-006-021; 2818-007-025; 2818-007-026; 2818-008-009; 2818-008-024; 2818-009-031, and 2818-009-033); unincorporated Chatsworth area. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map 1] [Map 2] [Map 3] MRCA 1/6/2016

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SANTA CLARITA AND ANTELOPE VALLEYS

PICO CANYON:
comment letter to Los Angeles County on Draft Environmental Impact Report for Aidlin Hills Residential Project (Vesting Tentative Tract Map No. 52796 – sch No. 2014091027) Pico Canyon, unincorporated Santa Clarita area. [Comment Letter] [Resolution] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Attachment 3] [Attachment 4] [Attachment 5] [Attachment 6] [Map] SMMC 1/11/2016

SOUTH OF 14 FREEWAY AND HIGHWAY 126:
project planning and design work on upper Santa Clara River watershed projects in the Rim of the Valley Trail Corridor, City of Santa Clarita and unincorporated Los Angeles County. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Map] [Attachment 3] SMMC 4/25/2016 [Staff Report] [Resolution] MRCA 5/4/2016

TEJON RANCH:
comment letter to Los Angeles County on the revised Notice of Preparation (SCH No. 2004031072 ) for the Centennial Project, unincorporated Los Angeles County. [Comment Letter] [Resolution] [Attachment] MRCA 1/6/2016

SOLEDAD CANYON:
acceptance of a conservation easement over an approximately 63-acre portion of APN 3209-011-006, unincorporated Los Angeles County. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 1/6/2016

SOLEDAD CANYON:
acceptance of a donation of approximately 500 acres (APNs 3209-006-018 and 3209-007-020), unincorporated Los Angeles County. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016

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EAST SAN FERNANDO VALLEY-ANGELES FOREST:

VERDUGO HILLS GOLF COURSE RE-DEVEVELOPMENT:
comment letter to the City of Los Angeles on Draft Environmental Impact Report (env-2007-3083-eir) and Recirculated Portions of the Draft Environmental Impact Report (rp-deir) for Verdugo Hills Golf Course project, 6433 La Tuna Canyon Road, Tujunga. [Comment Letter] [Resolution] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Attachment 3] [Attachment 4] [Attachment 5] SMMC 1/11/2016

acceptance of a donation of an approximately 0.08 acre property, APN 5607-026-009, in the Mountain Oaks area, City of Glendale. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map 1] [Map 2] MRCA 3/2/2016

Lopez Canyon Park Improvement project. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Attachment 1] [Attachment 2] [Map ] MRCA 3/2/2016

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ASSORTED:

Consideration of resolution adopting the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy Annual Report for fy 2014/2015. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Annual Report] SMMC 2/22/2016

Preview of findings from the Green Solution Project, Phase IV: Using Nature-Based Solutions to Transform Stormwater Runoff into New Water Supplies and Reduce Greenhouse Gases. [Staff Report] SMMC 4/25/2016

Consideration of resolution adopting FY 16/17 Workprogram. [Staff Report] [Resolution] [Map] MRCA 5/4/2016


Friday, May 6, 2016

State Adds to Monterey Wetland Park

Elkhorn Slough Wetlands Preserve to Grow

(from the March 2016 Coastal Conservancy agenda

107 acre Sand Hills Farm purchase, Monterey County


(the Conservancy regularly buys and preserves land along the California coast. The board also met in January but did not consider any land purchases:

CA Wildlife Conservation board deals

State $$ Will Save 2459 Acres at June Meeting

Notice of Meeting
WILDLIFE CONSERVATION BOARD
June 2, 2016 10:00 a.m. California State Capitol, Room 437 Sacramento, California 95814


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

More land for critters....

About 20,000 Acres to be Saved by CA Wildlife Board in February

Notice of Meeting
WILDLIFE CONSERVATION BOARD
February 24, 2016 10:00 a.m.
Resources Building 1416 9th Street, First Floor Auditorium Sacramento, California 95814

FULL AGENDA: http://nrm.dfg.ca.gov/FileHandler.ashx?DocumentID=115311


NORTH COAST:

Eel River Peninsula, Phase II (Foster Mountain), (Garcia Creek), (Summer Camp) Mendocino County $3,530,000
To consider the acquisition of three separate conservation easements by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection totaling 15,620± acres; near the City of Willits


FOR FULL STORY

Sunday, December 13, 2015

L.A Mountain Park News

New River Parks in the Works in Calabasas and Reseda

From the Agendas of the SMMC 12/14/2015 and MRCA 12/2/2015


Thursday, December 3, 2015

website update

Dear subscribers,

I am posting stories each day about new parks in California at my twitter feed. You can follow me here: twitter.com/rexfrankel

I will continue posting longer stories here at http://rare-earth-news.blogspot.com and have just reworked the right column on this site where you can find automated CA enviro blog posts.

The editor

Saturday, November 14, 2015

State Owned Wilderness to Grow by 4300 Acres

State Taxes Fund 4300 Acres of Additions to Wildlife Preserves

INCLUDES KEY LINK IN VENTURA COUNTY WILDLIFE MIGRATION AND TRAIL CORRIDOR

SUMMARY OF PURCHASES:
SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA: 646 ACRES
CENTRAL VALLEY/SIERRA NEVADAS: 144 ACRES
CENTRAL COAST: 322 ACRES
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA: 3131 ACRES

San Diego Canyon trails to get help from the State....

Coastal Conservancy wildlife habitat purchases from their October 2015 meeting

agenda:

About 500 Acres of New L.A. Parkland...

L.A. AND VENTURA MOUNTAIN AND RIVER PARKS UPDATE

From the agendas of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy and the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority for June through November 2015

HIGHLIGHTS:
PURCHASE OF 47 ACRES IN RAMIREZ CANYON IN MALIBU;
72 ACRES NORTH OF 101 FREEWAY IN AGOURA HILLS,
17 ACRE MOUNTAIN TOP IN LAUREL CANYON IN THE HOLLYWOOD HILLS, AND
33 ACRES IN BIG TUJUNGA CANYON IN THE EAST SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

NEW TRAILHEAD AT MISSION CANYON IN BRENTWOOD

OPEN SPACE DONATIONS AS PART OF DEVLOPMENTS IN THE SIMI HILLS:
290 ACRES IN DAYTON CANYON AND
68 ACRES AT THE ANDORRA PROJECT IN THE WEST SAN FERNANDO VALLEY

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Lots of Big Land Buys by State in September

WILDLIFE CONSERVATION BOARD
NOTICE OF MEETING
September 3, 2015
10:00 AM
1/ Natural Resources Auditorium
Sacramento, California 95814

PRELIMINARY AGENDA:


SUMMARY:

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

LA MOUNTAIN PARKS PURCHASES AND DEVELOPMENT THREATS

New 1200 Acre San Andreas Fault Park in Works 


From the Agendas of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy and Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority for March through June, 2015

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

State Helps Purchase of Big Sonoma Coast Gem

State Coastal Conservancy to Fund Saving 1600 Acres at Late June Meeting

For Agenda:


State $$ Saves 6718 Acres from Bulldozers

WILDLIFE CONSERVATION BOARD FUNDS LAND PURCHASES

Development Rights purchased (also known as “conservation easements”): 4951 acres
Land purchased in full: 1767 acres

Taken from the May 21, 2015 Meeting Agenda


Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Duh!

Developer Group Laments the Lack of Developable Land in Coastal Counties


Maybe because they've developed it all??

http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-orange-county-housing-shortage-20150330-story.html

"developable land is growing sparse along the coast"

...“The era of big master-planned communities is not quite over, but it’s ending,” he said

One Commenter: Interesting how the problem is always labeled as a housing shortage rather than overpopulation.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

From the Angeles Sierra Club blog, Oct. 2014 to March 2015.....

An Update on the Few Unsettled Eco Hot-Spots Left in L.A. and Orange County


IN ORANGE COUNTY:

BANNING RANCH IN NEWPORT BEACH: one of the last unsettled development battles in the OC

3/2015
Removal of native habitat at Banning Ranch halted
http://angeles2.sierraclub.org/news/blog/2015/03/removal_native_habitat_banning_ranch_halted

2/2015
You can help save Banning Ranch in Orange County
http://angeles2.sierraclub.org/news/blog/2015/02/you_can_help_save_banning_ranch_orange_county


12/2014
Sierra Club urging Coastal Commission to protect Banning Ranch
http://angeles2.sierraclub.org/news/blog/2014/12/sierra_club_urging_coastal_commission_protect_banning_ranch
Violations of the California Coastal Act is damaging one of the last coastal open space sites in Orange County.

http://www.banningranchconservancy.org/habitat.html

MAP: http://banningranchconservancy.org/geofeatures.html

http://banningranchconservancy.org/development-Plan.html
(the land owners propose to build 1375 homes and a 75 room hotel/resort plus 75,000 square feet of commercial space on 97.5 acres out of the 401 total acres site. The remaining 300 acres would be preserved as open space)

-------------------------------------

3/2015
A long-awaited (and deserved) land victory in Orange County. Who cares why it happened?
http://angeles2.sierraclub.org/news/blog/2015/03/long_awaited_and_deserved_land_victory_orange_county_who_cares_why_it_happened
On the end of Irvine Ranch Company's plans for East Orange and Gypsum Canyon

MORE ON THIS ISSUE:
http://rare-earth-news.blogspot.com/2014/08/irvine-company-donates-2400-acres-to.html



1/2015
Sign our petition to protect Aliso Canyon in O.C.
http://angeles2.sierraclub.org/news/blog/2015/01/sign_our_petition_protect_aliso_canyon_oc
Help us protect Aliso Canyon and open the promised Trail to the Sea.


--------------------------------------------------------------

IN LOS ANGELES COUNTY:

3/2015
Do you want to keep Griffith Park wild? New shuttle plan reopens roads in the park
http://angeles2.sierraclub.org/news/blog/2015/03/do_you_want_keep_griffith_park_wild_new_shuttle_plan_reopens_roads_park

12/2014
What's at stake if U2 musician is allowed to trash Malibu hillside
http://angeles2.sierraclub.org/news/blog/2014/12/whats_stake_if_u2_musician_allowed_trash_malibu_hillside
David Evans, a.k.a. the Edge, wants to build five mansions in a sensitive coastal area. Why is he tone deaf to the environmental impact?


10/2014
What's included in the new San Gabriel Mountains National Monument?
http://angeles2.sierraclub.org/news/blog/2014/10/whats_included_new_san_gabriel_mountains_national_monument
The 346,177-acre designation covers a little more than half of Angeles National Forest. Here's how you can help the new monument along.

10/2014
California's San Gabriel Mountains to be preserved as national monument
http://angeles2.sierraclub.org/news/blog/2014/10/californias_san_gabriel_mountains_be_preserved_national_monument


Monday, March 30, 2015

Santa Susana Mountains park grows

Santa Clarita buys more open space


http://www.signalscv.com/m/section/36/article/134837/

By Luke Money
Signal Staff Writer
March 29, 2015


City Council members have approved another boost to Santa Clarita’s open space by agreeing to buy about 173 acres of vacant land near the Newhall Pass. (SEE MAP ABOVE:  from right to left: AIDLIN PARCELS, Taylor Property, and Gateway Ranch)
The council signed off on purchasing the property for about $1.91 million at its most recent meeting last Tuesday 3/24/15.
The property, approximately 173.54 acres in all, is near Newhall Pass and west of other city-owned open space in Towsley Canyon.
Purchase of the property “will enhance the city’s on-going efforts to preserve open space lands and improve trail connectivity throughout the Newhall Pass,” the agenda from last week reads.
The property will also create an additional link from the Santa Susana Mountains to the San Gabriel Mountains and enhance Santa Clarita’s greenbelt west of Interstate 5, city officials say.

The city has purchased several parcels recently to expand its Open Space Preservation District in Newhall Pass.
In October, city officials dedicated the 302-acre Gateway Ranch property in Newhall Pass as open space. http://scvnews.com/2014/10/29/city-officials-cut-the-ribbon-on-gateway-ranch-open-space/

That land was once proposed to be part of the massive Las Lomas development project — a controversial plan that called for a 5,500-home community with 2 million square feet of commercial space and a 300-room hotel on the northeastern side of Interstate 5 just above the junction with Highway 14.
http://hikesantaclarita.com/where-to-go/gateway-ranch/


Also last year, city officials dedicated the Taylor Open Space, which covers 114 acres and is located in Lyons Canyon west of The Old Road and north of the city-owned Rivendale Park (which is in Towsley Canyon). http://www.signalscv.com/archives/128098/

http://scvnews.com/2014/09/22/council-tuesday-city-could-buy-never-built-lyons-canyon-ranch/

http://hikesantaclarita.com/where-to-go/taylor/

BELOW: the Taylor Open Space


park lovers need parking lots...

Griffith Park at the Heart of L.A. gets More Car traffic (temporarily?)


3/30/2015
http://www.latimes.com/local/california/la-me-hollywood-sign-20150330-story.html
L.A. opens 1.1-mile stretch of Mt. Hollywood Drive to help (lazy) tourists seeking closer views of the Hollywood sign

(EDITOR"S NOTE: these roads in the heart of Griffith Park were closed to cars 20 years ago)

Meanwhile, the City is studying a plan to link the park to the rest of the Santa Monica Mountains park system using 180 acres of city water department land:
http://www.scpr.org/news/2014/11/25/48280/proposed-trails-would-cross-where-mountain-lion-p/


more on wildlife migration at Griffith Park:
http://gpconnectivity.blogspot.com/

http://www.friendsofgriffithpark.org/



Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Tejon Ranch and Onyx Ranch update

Urban Sprawl and Industrialization of Wilderness vs. Condors and other birds: the battle continues...

By Rex Frankel,

Dear Readers:

An issue we have followed very closely in the past has been attempts to connect the concrete sprawl of Los Angeles with the San Francisco Bay and Sacramento metropolises. Most active has been the desert and oil field County of Kern, home to Bakersfield.

The two largest landholdings at play in Kern are the 270,000 acre Tejon ranch and the 68,000 acre Onyx Ranch. I have covered them both quite extensively:

http://rare-earth-news.blogspot.com/search/label/Tejon%20Ranch

http://rare-earth-news.blogspot.com/search/label/Onyx%20Ranch




                                              CLICK ON MAP TO ENLARGE

Tejon's owners want to build around 30,000 homes in the mountains east of Frazier Park along the 5 freeway (the Grapevine) in three separate projects which straddle the San Andreas Fault. Two are in Kern County and the largest is proposed in L.A. County. The two Kern county projects have faced unanimous approval by Kern County's elected politicians. The L.A. County project, called Centennial, faces a less certain future. So far, the economic likelihood of the housing projects going up at Tejon is very low, as the far north L.A. County economy has yet to recover from the end of the Cold War in the 1990's.

Onyx Ranch, on the other hand, is a desolate desert wilderness east of the Sierra Nevada Mountains which is now going to be split between windmill farms on the south half and an off-road vehicle park on the north, surrounded by an existing federal dune buggy and motorcycle play zone called Jawbone.

Here is the latest on these projects from the web:


TEJON: 

7/17/2014
http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2014/california-condor-07-17-2014.html
Condor advocates, conservationists and American Indians this week notified the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service they intend to sue over the agency’s approval of a “habitat conservation plan” that will destroy 14,000 acres of designated critical habitat for the California condor, one of the world’s most endangered birds. The habitat is entirely located on Tejon Ranch, north of Los Angeles, and will be destroyed by the development of the proposed Tejon Mountain Village resort project. Tejon Ranch encompasses some of the most important and essential foraging habitat for condors, much of it protected since 1977.

MORE INFO:
http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/campaigns/save_tejon_ranch/condor_controversy_history.html
                          
                         --------------------------------------------------------------

ONYX:

12/31/2014
Eastern Kern County Property Acquisition complete by State Parks Department for Off-Roader Park

BELOW: parcels in red were purchased by the State Parks Department. The parcels in gray to the south were kept by the landowner to be developed as windmill farms.


By Susan Barr / excerpted from the Kern Valley Sun


... the OHMVR Division hoped to acquire was approximately 28,275 privately-owned acres in eastern Kern County. The 59 parcels proposed for acquisition were largely interspersed in a checkerboard fashion, with the bulk of the land owned by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM), with some parcels adjoining the Sequoia National Forest or lands under other private or public ownership. (See Parcel Map.) The proposed project parcels were used primarily for off-highway vehicle (OHV) recreation, grazing, camping, wildlife viewing/birding, and other activities.


Motorized travel, including OHV recreation, occurs throughout much of the area, largely on designated roads and trails. A few of the project parcels were within the Jawbone Canyon open area, in which vehicles are not restricted to designated routes.
By acquiring the parcels, the OHMVR Division would be able to improve overall management of the area as land managers would have complete access to manage and support the recreational uses, protect sensitive resources, and restore and rehabilitate damaged areas...


Dan Canfield, Manager - Planning Office, OHMVR Division, out of Sacramento, confirmed yesterday in a telephone interview with the Sun, that the exchange of funds has taken place and escrow has been completed with regards to payment for land acquired for the East Kern Land Acquisition Project. The largest land owner was the Renewable Resources Group (RRG).

Canfield clarified that the process of Eminent Domain was not utilized, despite the fact that lengthy negotiations were required to come to a purchase price agreement with some of the land owners.


Canfield stated that he anticipates a seamless transition and that the focus will now be on assuring how lands in the acquisition can be conserved for future generations, while continuing recreational use as it has existed in the past. He added that the public should not expect to see new roads or trails becoming available.


http://ohv.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=27211
http://ohv.parks.ca.gov/pages/25010/files/nod_ekca-final-eir.pdf
Final approval document, 10/4/2013

http://www.jawbone.org/foj/



MORE ON THE NATURAL VALUES OF ONYX RANCH:

http://traenviro.com/experience/representative-projects/eastern-kern-county-property-acquisition-eir/
From east to west, the lands rise from the high floor of the western Mojave Desert into the southern Sierra Nevada and Piute Mountains. In general, the area is rugged and dominated by desert scrub habitat in the east and by woodland in the west. Unique biological resources include Butterbredt Spring, a significant migratory bird stopover site, habitat for listed species such as the desert tortoise, and a raptor migratory corridor between the Kern River Valley and the Mojave River. The lands are also rich in cultural resources. The area is used for motorized recreation, open range grazing, camping, wildlife viewing/birding, and other activities

Thursday, March 19, 2015

More Critter Parks...

CA Wildlife Board Funds Purchase of 18,175 acres of Habitat and Buys 13,333 Acres of Development Rights

Taken from the Agendas for the California Wildlife Conservation Board for November 2014 to March 2015.... http://wcb.ca.gov


ON THE NORTH COAST:

Blue Creek, Humboldt/Del Norte County $5,035,000
--grant to Western Rivers Forestry for a cooperative project with the State Coastal Conservancy, Wyss Foundation, the Yurok Tribe and the New Market Tax Credit Program to acquire 6,479± acres of land near the town of Klamath, and traversing both Humboldt and Del Norte Counties. WCB 11/20/2014 and 3/12/2015

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SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA:

East Contra Costa County NCCP/HCP (Viera/Perley) $882,500
--acquire 260± acres located in the Diablo Mountain Range, about 6 miles southeast of the Town of Clayton in Contra Costa County. WCB 2/25/2015

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CENTRAL VALLEY AND SIERRAS:


Granite Chief Wilderness--American River Headwaters, Placer County $3,500,000
--grant to American River Conservancy for a cooperative project with the California Natural Resources Agency and private donations to acquire 9,955± acres of land to help preserve alpine forests on the headwaters of the Middle and North Forks of the American River in Placer County. WCB 2/25/2015
Mt. Shasta Headwaters Forest, Hancock Phase I (Town Block), Siskiyou/Shasta County
$9,090,000
--grant to the Pacific Forest Trust for a cooperative project with the California Department of Transportation to acquire a forest conservation easement over 12,644± acres of land covering a
significant portion of the upper watershed of the McCloud River, located near the town of McCloud and transversing both Siskiyou and Shasta Counties. WCB 11/20/2014

Little Shasta Valley Conservation Easement, Fogg Gulch, Siskiyou County, $53,000
--grant to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to acquire a conservation easement over 645± acres of land. WCB 11/20/2014

Allensworth Ecological Reserve, Expansion 50-56, Tulare County, $0.00
--acquisition of 8 separate parcels of land totaling 12.98+/- acres. The funding source is being
provided by the California Department of Corrections Statewide Electric Fence Project mitigation fund. WCB 11/20/2014

Allensworth Ecological Reserve, Expansion 57, Tulare County $0.00
--acquisition of two separate parcels totaling four± acres of land. WCB 2/25/2015
Barry Point Fire Forest Restoration, Modoc County $2,500,000
--grant to the Pacific Forest Trust for a cooperative project with the landowner to restore forest habitat within the privately-owned Collins Timber Company’s 32,686-acre Lakeview Tract, located just west of Goose Lake, approximately 30 miles north of the city of Alturas in Modoc County. WCB 11/20/2014

San Joaquin Wetlands Associates Settlement (MID Eminent Domain) Stanislaus County $0.00
--accept a perpetual conservation easement over 44± acres of natural and managed wetlands, upland
habitats, and riparian areas on 12 privately-owned parcels in western Stanislaus County as part of a Settlement Agreement related to the Modesto Irrigation District’s Westley to Rosemore Transmission Line Project. WCB 2/25/2015
East Sacramento County Blue Oak Legacy Area, Expansion 3 (Graves) $810,000
--grant to the Sacramento Valley Conservancy to acquire 100± acres approximately six miles south of the city of Folsom and three miles north of the community of Rancho Murrieta. WCB 2/25/2015
San Joaquin River Parkway, Jenco Farms , Fresno County, $911,400
--acquisition of 23± acres, WCB 2/25/2015
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CENTRAL COAST:

Burton Mesa Ecological Reserve, SLC Lease Amendment, Santa Barbara County, $0.00
-- adding 175± acres of land currently under the jurisdiction of the California State Lands Commission. WCB 2/25/2015
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LOS ANGELES COUNTY:

Liberty Canyon Wildlife Crossing, Los Angeles County $650,000
--grant to the Resource Conservation District of the Santa Monica Mountains for a cooperative project with Caltrans, Los Angeles County, a private landowner, and the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority to enhance an existing undercrossing to allow wildlife to cross Highway
101, located approximately nine miles east of Thousand Oaks in Los Angeles County.
WCB 11/20/2014

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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA:

Western Riverside - Monte Cristo, $60,800
--acquire 21± acres of land near the community of Murrieta. WCB 11/20/2014

Western Riverside - Oldar, $95,000
--acquire 157± acres of land near the community of Temecula. WCB 11/20/2014

Western Riverside, Evandel – Wilson, $146,200
--acquire 80± acres of land near the community of Murrieta. WCB 2/25/2015
Western Riverside, Evandel – Bergstein, $218,565
--acquire 108± acres near the community of Murrieta. WCB 2/25/2015
MAP: https://picasaweb.google.com/rexfrankel/SouthernCaliforniaNewParks#6141417031356621218

Metcalf Meadow, Recovery Land Acquisition Grant (2013), San Bernardino County $570,000
--grant to the San Bernardino Mountains Land Trust to acquire14± acres located within the city of Big Bear. WCB 11/20/2014

Puma Canyon, Expansion 5 (Saylor) San Bernardino County $44,000
--grant to Transition Habitat Conservancy to acquire six± acres of land, to conserve lower montane chaparral and woodland habitat for the benefit of deer, mountain lion and other wildlife species, located in Puma Canyon on the lower northern slopes of the San Bernardino Mountains, near the community of Pinon Hills in San Bernardino County. WCB 2/25/2015
County of San Diego (PWRG) San Diego County, $227,090
--grant to the Endangered Habitat Conservancy (EHC) to acquire fee title to 79± acres and then transfer the property to the State CDFW, located near El Cajon. WCB 2/25/2015
County of San Diego, $1,625,295
--grant to the Endangered Habitats Conservancy to acquire a total of 634± acres from three separate landowners near the city of El Cajon.WCB 2/25/2015
City of Carlsbad (Cielo del Norte, Phase ll) San Diego County, $10,000
--grant to The Escondido Creek Conservancy to acquire fee title to 242+/- acres of land
for the protection of California gnatcatcher habitat in San Diego County. WCB 2/25/2015
MAP: https://picasaweb.google.com/rexfrankel/SouthernCaliforniaNewParks#6141416904924666994