Goleta Valley Land Trust OKs Funds for Baron Ridge Trail

March 2011. Goleta Valley Land Trust provides $45,000 grant for the environmental analysis documentation and construction of the Baron Ridge Trail. Construction could begin in winter-spring 2012.

The Land Trust has provided an additional $45,000 in funds to support the final construction of the Baron Ridge Trail. Of this, $15,000 will fund development of the environmental documents (EA) needed for project approval and $30,000 for the actual construction of the trail.

Last year, thanks to a $15,000 GVLT grant, the Trails Council completed the engineering and preliminary routing for the new trail. SBTC expects to find additional sources of funds for the EA in the upcoming weeks and to meet with Forest Service officials to kick off the effort by June.

This is an update to a proposal SBTC provided to the Goleta Valley Land Trust in March 2010 requesting a grant of $15,000 to construct a preliminary route (p-line) to the Santa Ynez Mountain crest. This 2nd Phase is for an additional grant for the environmental documentation and construction needed to build the final trail.

During the period from April 2010 to early February 2011 the SBTC trail crew constructed the p-line and presented the SB District Ranger, Douglas Dodge, of the Forest Service with the proposal described below. Mr. Dodge supported the merits of the proposal and has requested we move ahead with the development of an Environmental Analysis (EA) to determine the scope of the project and studies needed to approve construction.

As a result, SBTC has retained the services of AMEC, a local environmental consulting firm. One of the firm’s consultants, Dan Gira will act as the lead for AMEC. AMEC has also agreed because of the importance of the project and its value to the community to donate approximately 50% of its services and Mr. Gira has also agreed to donate all of his services for the project. As a result, SBTC expects that what might have been a $60,000-$80,000 cost for the EA to be no more than $40,000.

SBTC has divided the proposed grant proposal into two phases:

Phase One — Development of Environmental Analysis. SBTC is requesting a grant of $15,000 from GVLT to offset cost of the EA. We also have a grant request for $15,000 in to the Coastal Fund for the EA and have been approved for a $10,000 grant from the WWW Foundation in Pasadena contingent upon our receiving the GVLT grant. This total, along with donation of services from SBTC and AMEC should adequately cover the cost of the EA.

Phase Two — Trail Construction. SBTC has been assured by Mr. Dodge that upon successful completion of the EA, the Forest Service will approve construction of the ridge trail. SBTC is requesting a grant of $30,000 from GVLT for the construction of the 3.9 mile-long-trail. SBTC has obtained approval of an additional $10,000 grant ($20,000 total for 2011 for the EA and trail construction) and SBTC will be donating $20,000 of services for the project.

Our expectation after completing the p-line and reviewing costs for construction that it will cost $60,000 for this phase of the project, which is in line with our original estimate for construction costs.


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