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Old 05-10-2018, 09:20 PM   #181
The Deanster
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Thanks, I've given up on trying to get San Jose Parks involved. They're more interested in their existing plots of land and corporate partnerships.

However, I have not given up on this. I now have interest from another local entity that has some say in the land.

The person I met at a fundraiser was very interested in and excited about the park proposal. She said that I spoke to the wrong people and kept asking if I was glad I met her. She wants to explore the opportunity. Maybe I finally found the right person to help push it along. I will be meeting with her officially and State Parks staff is invited.

I'm obviously keeping it under wraps for now until something official happens.

This is a long term project but I don't care how long it takes, like I said, I'm not giving up
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Old 05-10-2018, 09:43 PM   #182
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You rock Dean.
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Old 05-11-2018, 07:18 AM   #183
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Its time will come.

Good to have you pushing forward Dean.

Best of luck.
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Old 05-25-2018, 12:23 PM   #184
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Thanks guys, the meeting went very well
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Old 05-25-2018, 05:58 PM   #185
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Good to hear. Happy to help as I can.
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Old 06-18-2018, 12:04 PM   #186
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I'll be attending a meeting this evening that may have a large impact on the proposed park.

South San Francisco Bay Shoreline Project meeting Monday, June 18 6:30-8:00p.m. at George Mayne Elementary School, 5030 N. 1st St., Alviso, San Jose.

If anyone wants to show support for a loop trail on the levee for the park please stop by and speak out. Sorry for the short notice. Comments can come later in the meeting if 6:30 is too early to slog through the traffic.
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Old 06-18-2018, 12:58 PM   #187
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I can't get to the South Bay, but is there any way to comment from afar?
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Old 06-18-2018, 01:24 PM   #188
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Originally Posted by bpw View Post
I can't get to the South Bay, but is there any way to comment from afar?
PM me and I'll give you my email. If they won't let me read other's comments I'll at least hand them to someone.
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Old 06-18-2018, 01:29 PM   #189
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The public input opportunities ended years ago apparently so I will be asking for a supplemental EIR.

My comments:

A goal of the South Bay restoration project was to retain recreation, but we are losing unprecedented access to nature and wildlife with the 9-mile loop trail out on the bay. Mitigating it with a paved trail along highway 237 and the zig-zag levee trail past garbage dumps and the sewage plant does not come close to equaling what was lost.

As mitigation for the lost trail a new park trail loop around pond A18 should be allowed while breaching and bridging the existing levee. Mitigation for allowing a new pond A18 loop trail could be satisfied by the park being responsible for creating more water bird nesting islands in pond A18 and providing the species and habitat stewardship staff and funding for the pond in perpetuity.

The pond trail would be an important aspect of the park to get families and the elderly/disabled out into nature and on the bay with docent or self-guided tours. Having the loop trail as part of an official park will allow for controlled use such as seasonal closures and park staff for law enforcement and environmental stewardship.

Recreation is the third most important goal of the project but is lacking in the plan. Where were the stakeholders for this aspect of the plan? Recreation is mentioned hundreds of times in the plan and increasing recreation is part of almost all the stakeholder’s general plans. Why were there no city or county or state or even national park agencies as stakeholders? The recreation additions in the project are a couple of benches and a few miles of unattractive trails while losing the loop trail.

The plan does not retain the level of existing recreation and what replaces it is inadequate. This plan is unbalanced without any recreation stakeholders and needs more recreation to be balanced. The plan had no stakeholders representing recreation and inadequate public input. The Lead Agency should prepare a supplement to the EIR with the changed situation of potentially having a new loop trail on pond A18 as per CEQA Guidelines §15163.

Public outreach and input was inadequate with only 3 private citizens commenting on the plan. I personally never heard about any public input opportunities. The notices were only posted on two obscure websites, the water district and Corps of Engineers. The park I mentioned has a petition which garnered over 500 local signatures and hundreds of positive comments in under 30 days.

California State Parks would entertain stakeholder status. The Chief and Deputy Director of the Division have offered to meet with any local officials.

Prop 68 or other funding should be explored for smoothing out the zig-zag levee to be more natural.
All the adjacent levees fit in with nature, the zig-zag has a painfully man-made appearance.

Trail connectivity is hailed in the project plan while at the same time, discouraging commuting with bikes on the levee by not paving is stated in the plan and reducing the potential numbers of people who might use the Refuge trails to connect between the existing Coyote Creek section of the Bay Trail and Sunnyvale is stated as a beneficial impact.

Connecting commuting routes should be a priority to get more people out exercising and out of their cars. To encourage commuting by E-bikes, a separate trail on the inland side of the levees should be included. Create a terraced levee with the separate inland, down slope trail reserved for E-bikes and other zero emission personal transportation that would normally cause conflicts with hikers and bicycles. The down-slope location of the “commute” trail will be visually screened from refuge visitors and wildlife. The more people not commuting by fossil fuel burning cars the better for the refuge, sea rise and all of us and should be encouraged, not impeded.

As stated in the plan; Under the McAteer-Petris Act, the BCDC requires locations for water-oriented land uses and increased public access to shoreline and waters and encourages the provision of maximum feasible public access to the bay and its shoreline, The San Francisco Bay Plan contains policies that encourage the development of waterfront recreation facilities and linkages between existing shoreline parks and requires the provision of these opportunities in relationship to sensitive biological species, habitats, and future restoration of managed ponds. The BCDC amended the Plan in August 2005. The amendment focuses on the significance of the need to maximize public access and recreational opportunities along with the environmental aspect. The amendment failed to meet that goal.

Questions:

Does the project have jurisdiction over pond A18 and the levee around it? Would the treatment plant authority be able to open a loop trail around their pond as part of a multi-use park if desired?

Is Phase I and specifically any work on the A18 levee delayed by federal funding?

What is the official procedure to amend the project plan? Would any action by Congress be able to save the pond A18 levee from destruction or would an emergency injunction be needed?

References from plan:
The lead agencies have designed the new proposed levee-top routes (maintenance roads that could be used as trails) to remain gravel. Leaving this trail unpaved would promote its use for educational tours and bird-watching over its use as a commuter route.

One of the proposed trail improvements that would be funded by the non-Federal sponsors (i.e., is not cost-shared by the USACE) is creating a paved section of the planned Bay Trail along SR 237. Once this trail is paved and linked to other existing Bay Trail segments, users would be able to quickly and more safely pass through the area. This would have the added benefit of reducing the potential numbers of people who might use the Refuge trails to connect between the existing Coyote Creek section of the Bay Trail east of the study area and the Sunnyvale section of the Bay Trail west of the study area for purposes other than Refuge visitation. Trail users would still be able to easily access the Refuge trails but would have the option of using the more direct, paved SR 237 trail. This is a beneficial impact.

Pond A18 (about 860 acres), owned by the City of San José, is also included in the Shoreline Phase I Study Area, although it is not included in the SBSP Restoration Project study area and is not covered in the SBSP Restoration Project Programmatic EIS/EIR. Although Pond A18 was not considered in the SBSP Restoration Project, primarily due to not being a USFWS-managed property, the actions being proposed for the pond are similar to those proposed for the rest of the Alviso Complex ponds, and the addition to the Shoreline Phase I Study Area is consistent with the goals for the greater South Bay tidal restoration”.

Pond A4, owned by the Santa Clara Valley Water District (SCVWD), and Pond A18, owned by the City of San Jose, are not part of the SBSP Restoration Project; therefore, the condition of these ponds was assessed through coordination with the respective landowner.
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Old 06-18-2018, 01:48 PM   #190
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Wow. Well done Dean.
This?
http://www.southbayshoreline.org/maps.html
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Old 06-18-2018, 02:22 PM   #191
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That's it. The pond in question, A18, is not part of the refuge so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that a trail can happen.
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Old 06-19-2018, 06:53 PM   #192
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I keep finding out more about how the Bay is governed. It will be a huge challenge to get a recreation trail to replace the 9-mile loop.

I will be attending a meeting Thursday in SF at another governing body.

If anyone is interested...

http://www.bcdc.ca.gov/cm/2018/0621Agenda.html

BCDC
June 21, 2018 Commission Meeting
1:00 p.m.
Bay Area Metro Center
375 Beale Street
Board Room, First Floor
San Francisco, CA 94105
(415) 778-6700

I will be speaking at the non-agenda item comment period at the beginning, 1:00pm and during item 8 on the above topics.

Man, I wish I got paid for doing all this stuff
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Old 06-26-2018, 04:15 PM   #193
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At last Thursday's meeting It was said that it would take an act of Congress to change the plan. I met with a Congressman Sunday. Stay tuned
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Old 06-26-2018, 06:28 PM   #194
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“An act of Congress”; that used to be a term for the impossible... now it is normal.
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Old 04-10-2019, 01:09 PM   #195
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Update: The Congressman's office wrote a letter to the federal agencies involved. The US Fish and wildlife responded with a letter disavowing their purview over Pond A18 and suggesting engaging with San Jose on the Bay loop trail issue.

Tomorrow there will be a report on Pond A18 at a meeting in San Jose. I will be speaking in favor of saving the levee and allowing a loop trail to mitigate the loss of the 9-mile trail at Alviso Marina County Park.
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