Access to Conservation Lands: Avoiding Environmental Conflicts
Tuesday, September 24, 2013 from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Agenda (includes invited speakers)
8:30 – 9:00 Registration Opens
9:00 – 9:15 Opening Remarks
John Baas, Senior Environmental Planner, MIG
Tom Fraser, President, WRA
9:15 – 10:15 Keynote Speakers
Invited speakers: Sarah Reed, Ph.D., Colorado State University; Janet McBride, Executive Director, Bay Area Ridge Trail Council
10:15 – 11:15 Panel Discussion: Land Managers’ Perspective
The importance of public access in conserving land, with applied management examples.
Invited panelists: Bryan Largay, Land Trust of Santa Cruz County; Paul Ringgold, Peninsula Open Space Trust; and Pat Shea, Wildlife Heritage Foundation
11:15 - 11:35 Networking and Refreshment Break
11:35 – 12:35 Panel Discussion: Regulatory Perspectives
Issues and challenges from the perspective of regulators.
Invited panelists: Ken Sanchez, US Fish and Wildlife Service; Bob Batha, Bay Conservation and Development Commission
12:35 – 1:30 Lunch (provided)
1:30 – 2:30 Concurrent Breakout Sessions
Looking ahead to resolve future conservation land access issues, these breakout sessions will include facilitators and event attendees.
2:30 – 3:30 Report of Breakout Session Discussions
3:30 – 4:00 Closing Remarks
Publicly- and privately-owned conservation areas are an important component of our overall portfolio of open space lands. These lands often have restricted access or no public access at all. Sometimes limited or no access is necessary to meet the conservation objectives or other goals associated with a particular parcel of land. Join us for a discussion about conservation planning and providing/not providing public access to the Bay Area’s growing network of restricted public and private open space lands. How do areas with limited access policies based on species or other biological resource preservation issues fit into the overall regional open space accessibility goals? A few examples include mitigation and conservation bank lands, watershed lands, and other types of protected areas that have sensitive biological resources and/or other land use constraints preventing public access.
Identify ways to meet the goals of conserving habitat for sensitive species and providing public access to some of our growing local network of public and private open space lands with restricted or undeveloped access. We aim to hear about the many innovative ways that local land use managers are undertaking to balance these sometimes conflicting goals. A lively series of presentations and discussions will seek to find common ground as we explore these important issues.
Outcomes from this Session
Define expected impacts to conservation sites of: public access/human activity; and O&M/construction activities
Report on all findings and results of breakout sessions
Communications protocol or hub - dedicated microsite to Public Access on Conservation Lands
Document case studies or demonstration projects illustrating best practices
Identify a potential working group with multi-disciplinary members, possibly working directly with the Bay Area Open Space Council or a comparable group to focus on this
Define the differences between public and private land approaches
Ultimate goal: Standardized list of criteria for the spectrum of approaches to public access - a handbook for public access
When & Where
WRA and MIG
About WRA: WRA, Inc. provides professional consulting services in plant, wildlife, and wetland ecology, regulatory compliance, mitigation banking, CEQA/NEPA, GIS, landscape architecture, and mitigation and conservation banking. Formed in 1981, we are a certified small business (OSBCR ref. #13333) with 57 professionals who have completed over 2,000 projects for public agencies, non-profit, and private organizations. WRA has a wide range of project experience throughout California in a variety of region-specific habitats. The firm has completed award-winning projects recognized by the American Society of Civil Engineering, Association of Environmental Professionals, California Water Environment Association, and American Society of Landscape Architects
About MIG: Since it was founded in 1982, MIG has focused on planning, designing and sustaining environments that support human development. We embrace inclusivity and encourage community and stakeholder interaction in all of our projects. For each endeavor — in planning, design, management, communications or technology — our approach is strategic, context-driven and holistic, addressing social, political, economic and physical factors to ensure our clients achieve the results they want.