MROSD crosses 60,000 acre threshold

PRESS RELEASE

MROSD surpasses 60,000 acres of open space preserved
after agreement with POST to manage October Farm

Los Altos, California [November 17, 2011] – The Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District has met a milestone after approving a lease agreement with Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) to manage its 270-acre October Farm property, pushing the District over the threshold of 60,000 acres of land preserved (see map).

“While there is still much work to be done, it is truly remarkable how much wildland the District and its partners have preserved in the densely populated Bay Area,” said District General Manager Steve Abbors. “This is the job the voters asked the District to do on their behalf and we are continuing to preserve these natural lands that sustain our quality of life in so many ways, providing clean air, clean water and respite from urban life.”

The District is a public agency created by voters in Santa Clara County in 1972 in response to rapid development in the area. It has since expanded into parts of San Mateo and Santa Cruz Counties with the mission of preserving a regional greenbelt of open space, protecting and restoring the environment and providing for ecologically-sensitive public enjoyment. The 60,000 acres of preserved natural lands that the District now manages includes 24 open space preserves with over 234 miles of trail that are free of charge and open to the public daily.

The October Farm property is located near Half Moon Bay and for now will remain under the ownership of POST, a private non-profit land trust that purchased the land in July. It will be managed by the District as part of its nearby Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve. The District and POST often work in a public-private partnership toward common land preservation goals.

The District will manage October Farm, which had the potential for three residential developments, for the health of the natural environment balanced with agricultural use. The property includes part of the highly-visible Irish Ridge, as well as ¾-mile stream frontage on Lobitos Creek. A large portion of the Lobitos Creek watershed is now under District management, creating opportunities for restoration projects that could benefit species such as threatened steelhead trout, which have been observed in the creek despite fish passage barriers. The District intends to continue conservation cattle grazing on the land and will explore the feasibility of agricultural crops.

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