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Ok, time to step up to the plate and write some letters/attend some meetings. This would be a terrible thing to lose...

*************************

IMBA Action Alert: Santa Monica Mountains Trail System Threatened

Canyonback Trail is a critical access point to the Westridge-Canyon
Back
Wilderness Park, in Southern California's Santa Monica Mountains. It
connects two major trail networks within the public parkland and is an
important gateway to a network of trails within the "Big Wild," a
21,000-acre urban paradise that extends from the San Fernando Valley to
the
Pacific Ocean.

IMBA and the locally based Canyon Back Alliance urge you to protest the
possible disruption of the Canyonback Trail. Please consider sending an
email today, in order to secure trail access to this valuable resource.

A section of the Canyonback Trail is also a public street, Canyonback
Road.
In 2004, a Homeowner's Association (HOA) tried to privatize and gate
the
northern section of Canyonback Road, which would have restricted access
to
public lands. Thanks to tremendous public opposition, including input
from
the IMBA-affiliated Concerned Off-Road Bicycle Association (CORBA),
construction of the Canyonback Gate was terminated before the gates
were
installed. Construction of the barrier, however, has recommenced, and
the
threat to continued access is again upon us.

To preserve trail access, IMBA urges mountain bikers to:

* Write a protest letter and email it to the Canyon Back Alliance, a
concerned citizens group supported by CORBA and IMBA, at
[email protected]; or fax your message to 310-201-2110. A sample is
available at http://www.canyonback.org/Help.htm

* Attend a public hearing, scheduled for Wednesday, May 18, 2005 10:30
a.m.,
at Los Angeles City Hall, 200 North Spring Street, Room 1020

Read on, to learn more about the access problems bicyclists would face
if
the planned gates are installed.

A real estate development is being planned along Canyonback Ridge, to
the
south of existing Canyonback Road. The developer wants to privatize the
area, replace the existing public access trail with a private road, and
restrict access by gating the trail/private road. While the developer
promises to allow "pedestrian access," nothing in the plan would
prevent
future residents or their HOAs from restricting or perhaps even
prohibiting
public access.

Another concern is that the HOA at the north end of Canyonback Road
have
renewed a plan to privatize and gate the street. They have proposed
re-routing the existing trail from a stable ridgeline to a
landslide-ridden
slope. But the 2-mile bypass would not be sustainable trail, and is
therefore unacceptable.

Losing this trail would sever northern access to the popular Whoops
Trail
from "Dirt" Mulholland and the Canyonback Trail. The Mulholland and
Canyonback access points are widely used by those residing in the
Valley and
those from other areas who access the trails conveniently off the
I-405,
which is close to the trailhead on Canyonback. The planned gating of
the
Canyonback Trail would also destroy the historic "loop" trail
connecting the
popular Westridge and Canyonback ridge areas.

end
 

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Good info on that link you posted. Thank you. I heard the public radio debate about that gate last year and I think it wrong for residents to close off their public streets and making it into a private one when it's our tax dollars that pay for it's upkeep and lights and such. It's also a dangerous precidence too for future neighborhoods up in the hills. Before you know it, the residents on Queensferry will close off their cul-de-sac to block off Sullivan Canyon.
 

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They would be all too happy to close off Queensferry. I live up on Mulholland so I ride the canyons from the topside and I do the Sully to Westridge loop alot, and more oft than not if I'm there on the weekend I see someone down there *****ing about the parking and the racket. Good ettiquette goes a long way!!
 

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a.k.a. MTBMaven
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Tax Payers

"I think it wrong for residents to close off their public streets and making it into a private one when it's our tax dollars that pay for it's upkeep and lights and such."

I don't want to cloud the issue here because I agree that this situation sucks and should not happen. I did want to comment on your statement quote above. Our tax dollars went for the construction of the road and go to its up keep and its lights. However if the street were to become private, I am pretty darn sure, the maintenance of the street would become the responcibility of the HOA, funded by the homeowners.

I work for a city and we have issues with our private streets. People want city services when things go wrong with their street, like durring the rains, and we cannot help them because they are not city streets. Sometimes they also try to give the streets to the city for us to maintain when they no longer want to. The problem is the street was not built to the city specs and we will not take ownership of the street.

If this HOA wants to make the street private they should have to purchase the street from the city or county (not sure who owns the street in question). The tax payers of the city own that street not the homeowners. Minor point compared to the larger problem. Just boarded and though I'd comment.
 

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mtnfiend said:
Our tax dollars went for the construction of the road and go to its up keep and its lights. However if the street were to become private, I am pretty darn sure, the maintenance of the street would become the responcibility of the HOA, funded by the homeowners.
That's exactly what you would hope to happen.

However, the Canyonback gate that was put in, is still blocking a street that is public. The HOA didn't have to convert it to a private street when they got that gate built. So that is my point of contention with that gate. If it was converted to a private street, then so be it. So that street still belongs to everyone.

So that community did get their cake and ate it too. A win/win situation for them.
 

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zippo said:
...Good ettiquette goes a long way!!
Great point.

We all need to do our part to show our respect for the folks who live up there by sharing the space in a polite manner. Too often have I seen people crank up their music as they change outside their car. I've even seen people out right park on Queensferry and sit on their truck beds with their bikes and down a six pack.

On a cynical note...
Don't mess with rich people's real estate value. They may not care about children with chopped-off arms in Sierra Leone, but man if you mess with their home values, they'll act on it. They didn't pay $2 million to be surrounded by unruliness. Ok, end of subjective rant. ;)
 

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I think this is an unfortunate trend that we will be facing in our mtn biking future here in the Santa Monica's near Brentwood.

There are alot of people up in the hills who don't like our presence at bikers because of few among us have not been polite and considerate up there. And so I think now they are taking action, like the new gate in that one neighborhood that we've been posting about.

Another threat will be the development of the land adjacent to the 405 and the Mountain Gate community. As they carve away at it and make new homes, there will be risk that they will reroute or deny trailheads.
 

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a.k.a. MTBMaven
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"the Canyonback gate that was put in, is still blocking a street that is public. The HOA didn't have to convert it to a private street when they got that gate built."

That's bullsh!t. That street belongs to everyone and access cannot be blocked. What a bogus city council or zoning commission to allow that to happen.

This is like residence trying to block access to the coast. At least the California Coastal Commission Act prevents blocking access to the coast by private parties, for now. The coast is deamed a public aset and not something that one can own. There is this public trail down to the ocean in Palos Verdes right through Trumps fancy golf course. They have to allow people to park in their parking lot and grant access to the trail. Too bad there are not the same rules for access to our mountains, at least that I aware of.
 

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frankenbike said:
I think this is an unfortunate trend that we will be facing in our mtn biking future here in the Santa Monica's near Brentwood.

There are alot of people up in the hills who don't like our presence at bikers because of few among us have not been polite and considerate up there. And so I think now they are taking action, like the new gate in that one neighborhood that we've been posting about.

Another threat will be the development of the land adjacent to the 405 and the Mountain Gate community. As they carve away at it and make new homes, there will be risk that they will reroute or deny trailheads.
Thanks for the good work impy! Email sent!
 

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Are you gonna eat that?
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Hypothetically speaking...

mtnfiend said:
"the Canyonback gate that was put in, is still blocking a street that is public. The HOA didn't have to convert it to a private street when they got that gate built."

That's bullsh!t. That street belongs to everyone and access cannot be blocked. What a bogus city council or zoning commission to allow that to happen.
If they get this road made private, is there anything to stop them from charging a fee for the use of said road to pay for it's upkeep and the wages of the gatekeeper ? (Also, if this goes ahead, why wouldn't we see say, Queensferry, Capri and Micheal Ln residents following suit) ?

Also hypothetically speaking, if the gate gets built, is there any legal reason why offended parties couldn't padlock it themselves ? :D Provided they didn't cause any damage to the gate whilst doing so, of course.
 

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Kyoseki said:
Also hypothetically speaking, if the gate gets built, is there any legal reason why offended parties couldn't padlock it themselves ? :D Provided they didn't cause any damage to the gate whilst doing so, of course.
While I'm sure there is a legal reason why not, I also have a Kryptonite lock to donate to the cause. :D
 

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Public Hearing

It looks like the public hearing on May 18 may be postponed. For updates check http://www.canyonback.org/

5/4/05: On May 3, 2005, the Brentwood Community Council passed a motion to send a letter to the City Planning Department asking that the Department prepare a Supplemental Environmental Impact Report that adequately addresses the development project's potentially adverse impact on the public's recreational use of the Canyonback Trail, and that it postpone the May 18, 2005, Public Hearing until after the Supplemental EIR is circulated and the public has had an adequate opportunity to comment.
 

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whoa...this sucks, I just hosted an IMBA team at my house here in MN, theirs names were Nat and Rachael, they had some killer helmet cam footage they showed me, totally blew me away...must save it so I can ride some day...but anyway they were talking about the IMBA alert for the area...

L8R
Buck
 

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I just received an email from Tom Freeman at canyonback.org re: the possible postponement of the public hearing on May 18:

"It has not been postponed and per Kevin Keller, District CD-11 Chief
Planning Deputy, it will not be postponed. If it is, I will post it on
the website asap. Thanks."

"If you can go to the Public Hearing on Wed. May 18, 10:30 am (City
Hall, downtown, Room 1020) it would be great. A strong public
showing is important!"
 

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Man

Wow, anyone know what they want to do with the land??? I thought it was under some sort of perservation. Also, I hate how they have these meetings in downtown LA.....the traffic basically kills any way of getting there.
 
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