The City of San Luis Obispo recently reported progress on its first Open Space Maintenance Plan, developed to protect the City’s natural resources including plants, animals, geologic, and historic features as well as the natural areas themselves. The report, which was reviewed in detail with the City Council in January, accompanies a brief video highlighting the City’s major accomplishments toward open space maintenance in 2017.
Last year, several work efforts focused on the City’s 2015-17 Major City Goal of Open Space Preservation, including new and deferred projects. Of particular focus in 2017, ranger staff installed new informational panels at all trailhead kiosks, as well as directional signage throughout the entire open space system. The trails are now safer and more welcoming for the public to enjoy.
The Open Space Maintenance Plan, developed by Parks & Recreation, is divided into three sections, including maintenance activities, trailhead amenities, and open space locations. City ranger staff maintain approximately 3,700 acres of open space lands and 15 properties.
Conservation includes activities such as trailhead, parking, and emergency access improvements; directional and educational signage and kiosks; trail installation, closures, re- routes, and erosion control; invasive species control, fire protection, and native habitat restoration; and bridge, fence, and open space infrastructure replacement.
Looking ahead to 2018, the City’s open space team will focus on major improvements at Johnson Ranch and Reservoir Canyon trailheads, including the installation of a 60-foot pedestrian bridge above the waterfall at Reservoir Canyon. The recently acquired Waddell Ranch property will undergo a comprehensive study and planning for resource protection and appropriate public access.