La Verne Wilderness Park - Needs Your Support

La Verne Land Conservancy played a key role in enabling La Verne to receive a large block of land to be protected from development, and made available for public use. Now they can use the help of walkers, hikers, cyclists, and equestrians.

From the La Verne Land Conservancy:
When:  Wed. Jan 9, 6:30 PM
What: Planning Commission Meeting
Where: La Verne City Council Chamber
Why: The Commission is being asked to accept a plan which keeps the public off publicly owned open space in the City.

We would love to have hikers and bike rides come out on January 9th to voice your opinions about the need for additional access. The City is sitting on a wonderful resource but is about to close it off indefinitely.
We believe that a viable single-track hiking and biking trail could be constructed with the same access point on Golden Hill Road proposed for the loop trail but would extend up and connect with the Sunset Ridge Mountain Road. This would keep people from “loitering” behind the homes and would open up a new trail for hikers and cyclists. The City has grants totaling $650,000 that could be used to construct the trail, add signs, fencing, and gates, and then monitor the area.
Basically, the City was given a gift of 208 acres of open space in 2006 purchased with State and LA County funds. The grant monies require that La Verne not only preserve and protect the land but also work to create new passive recreation opportunities.
To meet the access requirement, the City drafted and EIR and associated “La Verne Wilderness Area Management and Public Access Plan.” Unfortunately, the only public access proposed in the new Management Plan is a short “loop trail” only for hikers which would exist behind the homes on Monterey Street. This loop trail would allow access to 5 of the 358 acres of open space that the City owns, all of which was gifted to them for public benefit. The loop trail would be accessed off Golden Hills Road. You can find the EIR and Management Plan here: La Verne Wilderness Management Plan
At the Planning Commission hearing on October 10th, several people spoke out against the proposed loop trail-primarily homeowners from Monterey and Golden Hills. Not surprisingly, they were not in favor of potential traffic issues, and the idea of people wandering around in a circle behind their homes. Only people located within a 600-foot radius of the open space area received notices for the hearing. The Planning commissioners voted to postpone approval, asked staff to revisit the Management Plan, then were to reconvene for approval December 13th. The meeting was continued until January 9th because the agenda hadn’t been posted.
At the January 9th hearing, we expect Staff to present a resolution that will eseentially shelve the public asscess portion of the Management Plan indefintely. Because of the lack of support for the “loop trail” the staff has determined that there are no suitable public access alternatives. We disagree. Please consider coming to the meeting.

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