Monday, June 11, 2007

The need to save Pilarcitos Community Park

(Committee for Green Foothills wrote the letter below regarding Half Moon Bay's Pilarcitos Community Park. -Brian)


June 11, 2007

Mayor Naomi Patridge and Members of the City Council
City of Half Moon Bay
501 Main Street
Half Moon Bay, CA 94019

Dear Mayor Patridge and Members of the Council,

The Committee for Green Foothills is deeply concerned about the City Council’s apparent interest in selling Pilarcitos Community Park, as reported in the news media, and agendized for Closed Session at the Council’s June 5, 2007 Special Meeting.

The city acquired this gateway property in October, 2004 from one of the coastside’s pre-eminent growers, Nurserymen’s Exchange. Through the generosity of the Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST)’s no-interest loan, the city has been given three years to find the necessary funding for the park. We understand that POST has offered to extend their loan beyond the October, 2007 deadline, and to work with the city to secure grants so Pilarcitos Park can become a reality.

The 21-acre park’s creekside setting and gentle slopes make it an ideal site for active recreation including soccer and baseball fields as well as passive uses such as trails and a community garden. The park’s Master Plan, adopted in November, 2005 after an extensive public process, provides the vision and guidance for meeting some of the long-standing critical needs for recreational facilities in Half Moon Bay and the Mid-Coast.

It was the clear intent of Nurserymen’s Exchange and POST that this property should become a Community Park. It would be extraordinarily short-sighted and deeply regrettable to dispose of this property. In our view, it would also be a major breach of trust with all the citizens who have devoted their time and talent to the planning process, and the countless residents and visitors who will enjoy the park in the future.

We recognize that the city needs to find sources of funding to make the park a reality. This is not an unusual situation - every new park that we have been involved with, over the years, has had similar challenges. Yet these challenges have been overcome.

We urge you to work with POST and other interested groups and agencies to make Pilarcitos Park a great recreational asset for the city. We offer our support in this effort.


Lennie Roberts, Legislative Advocate
Committee for Green Foothills

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