COMPLETE LISTS OF CALIFORNIA'S "NEW PARKS" ARE POSTED ABOVE
2008 and 2009 ADDITIONS TO THIS PAGE ARE POSTED AT: http://rare-earth-news.blogspot.com/2008/04/over-130000-acres-of-wildlife-habitat.html
CLICK ON ANY IMAGE TO ENLARGE
The purchases by our State and Federal government are summarized below and are arranged geographically by county from south to north. The totals only include three State agencies: the Parks Department (http://parks.ca.gov/), the Coastal Conservancy (http://www.scc.ca.gov/) and the Wildlife Conservation Board (http://www.wcb.ca.gov/. We do not have totals yet for those years for other State agencies that save land on the local level, such as the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, Calif. Tahoe Conservancy, Sierra Nevada Conservancy and others.
We also don't yet have totals for land saved by local governments or by private land trusts. One of the reasons for the difficulty in compiling this data is that sometimes several State agencies and local land trusts will take credit for saving the same property, so separating the overlapping totals has been very time-consuming.
This tally of new public parkland is a "living" document. We will update it as new information comes in.
11 acre proposed San Pasqual Union School Addition to San Pasqual Battlefield State Historic Park, 11-12-2002. The California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) will hold a hearing on a proposal to purchase from willing sellers the San Pasqual Union School as an addition to San Pasqual Battlefield State Historic Park in northeast San Diego County. The proposed addition would provide protection of significant cultural resources.
By CC 10-25-2001--The Conservancy approved acquisition of the Manchester Property on San Elijo Lagoon using $1.5 million of previously authorized Conservancy funds.
(click on map to enlarge)
The California Department of Parks and Recreation to purchase two properties in east San Diego County as additions to the State Park System. The 2,117- acre Tulloch/Cuyamaca Ranch, currently owned by The Nature Conservancy, would be an addition to Anza-Borrego Desert & Cuyamaca Rancho State Parks. The 842-acre Mason Valley Ranch, currently optioned by the Anza-Borrego Foundation from the private landowner, would be an addition to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. Both properties would provide protection of significant wildlife habitat/corridors and cultural resources.
http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/0101306freemanpropertyescrowcloses.pdf 10-2006--escrow has closed on the Freeman Property and that State Parks is now the official owner of the property, also known as Truckhaven and Desert Cahuilla. The Freeman property is located west of the Salton Sea, bordering both Anza-Borrego Desert State Park and Ocotillo Wells State Vehicle Recreational Area. The Freeman property consists of approximately 4,000 acres
-3500 acres in Wildwood Canyon by SP 10-1-2001: http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/2001%20Wildwood%20Canyon%20Hearing.pdfSTATE PARKS SETS HEARING ON WILDWOOD CANYON PURCHASE NEAR YUCAIPA – The California Department of Parks and Recreation will hold a public hearing on Tuesday, Oct. 9, to solicit comments on the proposed acquisition of up to 3,500 acres of mostly undeveloped land in the Wildwood Canyon area of San Bernardino County.
-1147 acres bought by SP in San Timoteo Canyon
http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/nr070201.pdf and parks comm.. minutes 10-25-2000 7-2001-- State officials and local supporters Tuesday will announce the purchase of a key piece of property linking Chino Hills State Park with the 649-acre Coal Canyon property that became part of the state park system last year. The latest acquisition will preserve one of the last remaining viable wildlife corridors in all of Southern California. It is probably the most significant acquisition that the department has completed in the last ten years and it represents one of the most expensive acquisitions for the department. This acquisition is also unique in that it is the first time the department has purchased an expensive piece of property in an urban area, primarily to link existing preserved areas in order to preserve the biological diversity of Chino Hills State Park and a number of other park areas in the Puente/Whittier Hills area. The department would not be acquiring this property were it not for its value in linking the surrounding large masses of habitat in order to preserve the species diversity within this large urban area. The Coal Canyon property was purchased from the St. Claire Company. The parcel comprises 650 acres and the acquisition cost was $40 million. The per acre cost was driven up by the fact that the Coal Canyon property had received approval from the city of Anaheim for the development of 1,500 housing units. This acquisition is significant not only because of its close proximity to urban areas, but also because this particular area of the state has been identified by conservation biologists as one of the eighteen “hot spots” in the world where biodiversity is most threatened. Furthermore, a blue ribbon panel of conservation biologists put together by the department was queried and they described the Coal Canyon acquisition property as being of global significance, that would result, if not acquired to preserve this corridor, into substantial species extinction. Chief Rayburn explained that the department had three studies completed prior to making this acquisition. The first study was the assembling of a blue-ribbon panel referred to above. The department asked the blue-ribbon panel to (1) determine if the freeway underpass could function as a viable corridor, and (2) to verify the assertion that there would be substantial species losses in Chino Hills State Park and other areas located to the north if the area was fragmented and the corridor was not preserved. The blue-ribbon panel confirmed that the underpass was a viable corridor and that significant species losses would occur without the corridor. The second study conducted by the department examined if the Coal Canyon area was the only place in which the linkage between these two large landscape masses could occur, and that was confirmed. The third study looked at the public’s investment in open space and natural resources north of the 91 Freeway. Between city, county, and state agencies, $150 million has been invested in open space, with more to come. This assisted the department in approving this acquisition because it was felt that spending $40 million to protect the biological diversity of a $150 million investment made sense.
120 acres by CC-5-24-2001--$250,000 to the Mountains Restoration Trust for acquisition of three parcels encompassing approximately 120 acres of land including critical habitat for western pond turtles in accordance with the Zuniga Creek and Wetland Resource Enhancement Plan.
Around ½ acre by CC 9-28-2000-disburse up to $10,000,000 for acquisition of the Lechuza Beach property in Malibu, Los Angeles County, near Matador State Beach, located on Sea Level Drive
1659 acres by SP-Lower Topanga http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/nr062901b.pdf 6-2001 Lower Topanga map http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/topanga.pdf In March of this year, the American Land Conservancy, a private, non-profit organization that facilitates the preservation of parkland and water resources throughout the nation, announced that it would purchase the property from LAACO, Ltd., the Los Angeles Athletic Club. The intent of ALC has been to purchase the 1,659-acre property and hold it for transfer to the California Department of Parks and Recreation when park bond money became available. The money for acquiring lower Topanga Canyon will come from the Proposition 12 Parks Bond Act of 2000. Of the $48 million allocated, $43 million will be used to purchase the property and the remaining $5 million will be used to relocate the tenants and begin the restoration of the site.
for the State's restoration website, http://www.ballonarestoration.org/, and for other Ballona Wetlands updates, http://www.saveallofballona.org/
11-2002 LOS ANGELES – California State Parks and the Baldwin Hills Conservancy today announced the expansion of Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area with the acquisition of the first in a series of parcels along the Stocker Corridor in the Baldwin Hills. The preservation of the 38-acre open space corridor is part of the ongoing effort to expand Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area into a two-square mile natural park, open space and recreation oasis in the heart of southwest Los Angeles. This new acquisition will ultimately provide a critical link between the Crenshaw Community and the existing Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area. Proposition 12 funds have been earmarked for the Stocker Corridor project via legislation by Sen. Kevin Murray and supported by Speaker Herb Wesson and the Davis Administration. The Stocker Corridor is a mile-long series of parcels that has remained as natural open space through the efforts of community members. The purchase of this first parcel along the corridor for $675,000 has been the culmination of community, local and state agency efforts to preserve the corridor and retain the natural characteristics of the Baldwin Hills area. 6-2002 http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/061802notice.pdfMap of stocker corridor http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/061802map.pdf
Taylor Yard 57.8 acres and the Cornfields, 32 acres by SP
--http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/121203.pdf 12-2003-California State Parks announced today that it has acquired its first park property which directly fronts along the Los Angeles River at Taylor Yard near downtown Los Angeles. The 17.8-acre parcel G that has been a part of the Union Pacific Taylor Yard properties runs for about a half-mile along the river just east of the Highway 2 Glendale Freeway bridge over the Los Angeles River. It is one of the few remaining natural habitat zones left along the river and is seen as essential for the long-term restoration of the Los Angeles River. State Parks has reached an agreement with Union Pacific to purchase the17.808-acres for $10,472,000.00 and with Public Works Board approval today, escrow on the property is expected to close next week. The acquisition funding comes from Proposition 12. In December 2001, State Parks purchased the 40-acre Taylor Yard property known as parcel D along San Fernando Road. However, it is separated from the river by the Metrolink rail line. It was likewise purchased with Proposition 12 bond funding. It is now being developed jointly by California State Parks and the City of Los Angeles as a seamless park that includes both natural and recreational areas. The 17.8 acre parcel is just upstream and State Parks intends to develop it as a natural riverfront area and connect it to Taylor Yard, thereby connecting the Taylor Yard property to the Los Angeles River parkland corridor. Many believe parcels D and G are the linchpin properties for moving ahead and acquiring more of the riverfront by State Parks and other agencies to eventually create a Los Angeles River Parkway. State Parks also owns the Cornfield property, located downstream of Taylor Yard. It does not directly touch the river, but has links for bike paths and trails to the river, thereby making it one of the connecting properties to Taylor Yard and another major part of the future Los Angeles River Parkway. The northernmost 17.8-acre parcel is contiguous to the 6-mile stretch of soft-bottomed channel of the Los Angeles River known as the “Glendale Narrows”. This is one the few remaining natural habitat zones where one can get a glimpse of what the Los Angeles River may have looked like prior to channelization. Parks comm.. minutes 8-22-03–an agreement has been reached to form a partnership with the City of Los Angeles in which the state would lease about half of the 40-acre Taylor Yard site to the City of Los Angeles, which would then construct sports fields at the city’s expense. State Parks would develop the other half of the site as a “traditional” state park, which would retain the link to the parcel that is immediately adjacent to the Los Angeles River. The objective being to have a park that seamlessly transitions from active recreation to more passive recreation to a riparian environment. State Parks hopes that this will eventually lead to the “greening” of the Los Angeles River in this area.
http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/110101a.pdf 11-2001-Taylor yard parcels map: http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/110101amap.pdf For more on the original plan to purchase up to 127 acres of land locally referred to as Taylor Yard
Cornfields http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/nr061401.pdf 6-2001-Cornfields map http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/nr061401b.pdf Photos: http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/nr061401d.pdf The 32-acre parcel is within an abandoned Union Pacific R.R. railyard located between North Broadway and North Spring streets as they run between the Chinatown area and the Los Angeles River. The L.A.- Pasadena Blue Line light rail right-of-way forms the parcel’s western and northern boundaries, with an intermodal station under construction one block south of the property in Chinatown. In March of this year, the Trust for Public Land (TPL), a national non-profit land protection organization, stepped in and negotiated an option to buy the property from Union Pacific Railroad Company via the current option holder, Majestic Realty Company. An appropriation of $40,000,000, most of which will come from the Proposition 12 Parks Bond Act of 2000, is expected to be approved by the Governor when he signs the budget this summer. TPL will then transfer the property to State Parks.
By CC 10-26-2000-- $4.8 million from CC to initiate the Santa Clara River Parkway program in Ventura County to buy the Camp property
also 2001--$$200,000 to the Cambria Community Services District for the preparation of a Public Access Management Plan for the East-West Ranch property located in the community of Cambria, San Luis Obispo County.
May 26, 2005 Site Located for State Vehicular Recreation Area
BAKERSFIELD – The City of Bakersfield and the State of California, announced today their partnership to acquire land on behalf of California State Parks Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Division, for the development of a State Vehicular Recreation Area (SVRA). The property is less than 30 minutes drive north from downtown Bakersfield. The City of Bakersfield, on behalf of the State, has obtained an assignable option using grant funds from the Off-Highway Vehicle Trust Fund, to purchase the prospective site, which totals approximately 11,000 acres. (NOTE: PROJECT IS STALLED DUE TO VARIOUS ISSUES)
1719 acres bought and 1411 saved with a conservation easement by CC and WCB: 8-14-2003- disburse up to $5,000,000 to the Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) towards its acquisition of the Bolsa Point Ranches in San Mateo County.
3870 acres by CC, SP and WCB- Cowell Ranch-- 5-23-2002--$2,100,000 to the Trust for Public Land to increase the Conservancy's August 2, 2001, authorization for the acquisition of approximately 3,870-acres of the Cowell Ranch property in eastern Contra Costa County. 8-2--2001--$$3,000,000 to the Trust for Public Land toward the acquisition of an approximately 3,870-acre portion of the Cowell Ranch property in eastern Contra Costa County. http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/061002notice.pdf
Project investigation: http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/061002notice2.pdf
Map of land: http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/cowell6-4-02.pdf
The land is part of a large holding known as Cowell Ranch.. Cowell Ranch is owned by S. H. Cowell Foundation, a foundation for charitable giving with headquarters in San Francisco. DPR, State Coastal Conservancy, Wildlife Conservation Board, U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, and Caltrans will be the proposal’s major funding partners. Trust for Public Land, a national non-profit land conservation organization, is securing the property. Once acquired by DPR, the property would become part of the State Park System.
Map of Recent Parks Purchases
4-2002- The California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) will hold a public
hearing to discuss the proposed acquisition of 69.67± acres of open space land in Marin
County. For map: http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/042302map.pdf
Project investigation: http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/042302investigation.pdf
97.57 acres by SP at Tomales Bay http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/110201a.pdf
Map of tomales bay parcel http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/110201amap.pdf
2-2006 The Sonoma Coast State Beach Citizens Advisory Committee and California State Parks will host a meeting to share planning information and solicit public input regarding future public use of the Carrington Coastal Ranch property, at the junction of Highway 1 and Coleman Valley Road, north of Bodega Bay. This 335-acre former ranchland, with spectacular views of the coastline, was purchased by the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District and will be transferred to State Parks for inclusion into Sonoma Coast State Beach. The property is currently open to the public only during guided tours offered by the non-profit group, Landpaths.
5-2005-The Trust for Public Land, the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open
Space District, and California State Parks announced today the purchase and permanent public protection of 3,373 acres as a part of Sonoma Coast State Beach. An additional 515 acres are protected through two conservation easements preserving a total of nearly 3,900 acres of the Willow Creek property, just south of the Russian River in Sonoma County. The land being protected through this purchase was formerly owned by Mendocino Redwood Co., LLC. Sonoma Coast State Beach is the third busiest facility within the entire State Parks system. The purchase of the Willow Creek property creates 13,500 acres of protected landscape in western Sonoma County by linking together both public and privately conserved lands that extend from the Pacific Ocean to the coastal hills, including redwood forests and inland grasslands. There are plans to create a 15-mile loop trail through the Willow Creek property that will connect the towns of Occidental and Camp Meeker to the Coastal Trail near Jenner.
The Trust for Public Land (TPL) negotiated the purchase of the Willow Creek property and easements, and MRC agreed to protect the nearly 3,900 acres in this transaction for a cash consideration of $20,785,000. TPL worked together with several agencies to secure funding for this public purchase. The Sonoma Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District contributed $10,225,000, the California Wildlife Conservation Board contributed $4,187,000, the California State Coastal Conservancy contributed $4,187,000, and the California Department of Parks and Recreation contributed $2,186,000. The funds from these state agencies came from voter-approved park bond measures, Propositions 50 and 40. “This purchase protects almost all of the Willow Creek and Freezeout Creek watersheds critical to the health and vitality of the Russian River. There are nearly 3-miles of fish bearing creeks and streams on the property, which offer an excellent opportunity for the successful reintroduction of coho salmon and steelhead trout,” said Al Wright, Executive Director of the California Wildlife Conservation Board.
33 acre Pitkin Marsh and 165 acre Van Hoosear conservation easement
8-2001- proposal by the California Department of Parks and Recreation to acquire a 22-acre parcel of land to be added to Clear Lake State Park, the undeveloped property is at the corner of Soda Bay Road and Clark Drive sough of Clear Lake in Lake County.
9-2002 MENDOCINO – A coalition of state, federal and private interests joined forces to acquire 7,334 acres of land along the Big River in Mendocino County – encompassing the longest undeveloped, unprotected estuary in Northern California – to become the newest addition to the California State Park System. The acquisition by State Parks was officially recognized at a dedication ceremony Saturday, Sept. 28, at Big River Beach, east of the Big River Bridge immediately south of the village of Mendocino. The $25.6-million acquisition was accomplished with about $16.1 million in state funds, including money from Proposition 12, the parks bond act approved by voters in 2000; about $7.3 million in private donations secured by Mendocino Land Trust, Inc., a local non-profit organization; and about $2.2 million in federal funds, including $1 million in transportation funds administered by the California Department of Transportation. The seller was the Hawthorne Timber Company.
Big river map: http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/712/files/big_river_cons_map.pdf
The California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) will hold a hearing to hear comments on its proposal to acquire up to ± 7,400 acres of land in the Big River drainage of Mendocino County. DPR intends to add the land to the State Park System. This acquisition would place the entire 8.3-mile tidal reach of Big River and the forested area around it within public ownership. To the north the property borders on Jackson State Forest, Mendocino Woodlands State Park, and private lands, to the east by lands of Hawthorne Timber Company, to the south by private lands along Comptche-Ukiah Road, and to the west by Mendocino Headlands State Park. Second-growth redwood forest covers most of the upland property, with some wetlands and pockets of hardwoods interspersed. The 8.3-mile long estuary of Big River is scenically and biologically outstanding, and it provides recreation opportunities for hikers, mountain bikers, paddleboaters, wildlife watchers and others. Despite heavy logging, the Big River system supports spawning runs of coho salmon and/or steelhead throughout its basin. Juvenile fish use the extensive estuary as crucial rearing habitat, and a higher-than-average return rate of spawning adult fish in the Big River system has been the result. No one resides on the property, but there is a working aggregate quarry along the river that can be seen from the Highway 1 bridge. Operators of the quarry will cease operation by close of escrow and begin reclaiming the property under conditions of their permits. Two local private land trusts, Trust for Wildland Communities and Mendocino Land Trust, have taken the lead on acquiring the property and have raised substantial funds from private sources. Public agencies including the Coastal Conservancy, Wildlife Conservation Board, DPR, and others will also contribute major sums. The Hawthorne Timber Company, a division of Campbell Timberland Management, currently owns the property. Parks Comission Minutes 10-12-2002 --Acquisitions – Several new acquisitions were made possible by Proposition 12 and Proposition 40 bond funds. State Parks recently completed an acquisition of more than 7,000 acres at Big River in Mendocino County. These 7,000 acres encompass the largest undeveloped, unprotected estuary in Northern California. This was a $25.6 million purchase made possible with funds from a variety of sources, including private monies and funds from other departments, and $1 million in federal funds.
5/5/2003--State Parks Completes Acquisition Of Redway Parcel in Humboldt County
REDWAY, Humboldt County – California State Parks today announced its acquisition of a heavily-wooded, 581-acre parcel overlooking the community of Redway and the south fork of the Eel River. Purchase of the parcel from the Pacific Lumber Company (PALCO) adds to State Parks’ existing forested holdings in the area, as well as addresses efforts by local residents to preserve the property. The property is adjacent to State Parks’ John B. Dewitt Redwoods State Reserve, and contains stands of Douglas fir and redwood, including some old growth redwood. The new land will be managed in the same manner as surrounding state property. Steve Horvitz, Eel River Sector Superintendent will have management responsibility. The acquisition was made with the assistance of the Save-the-Redwoods League. The purchase price was $2.5 million, paid for with Proposition 40 parks bond funds. Escrow was closed on the property Thursday.