Pogonip multi-use trail meeting in Santa Cruz TONIGHT (Wed Sept 1st)- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Caution;  Merge;  Workers Ahead! Pogonip multi-use trail meeting in Santa Cruz TONIGHT (Wed Sept 1st)

    Sorry for the late notice but I've been busy these days....

    There is a public forum on the Pogonip multi-use trail hosted by the Santa Cruz Parks and Rec Department 7-9 pm tonight (Wed Sept 1) in Santa Cruz at the Harvey West Park Clubhouse, 300 Evergreen St Santa Cruz, CA. Details at the above link.

    I would like to encourage all Santa Cruz mountain bikers and those mountain bikers who enjoy riding the trails in Santa Cruz to attend and offer their assistance and support in making this trail a reality.

    Meeting Agenda (from the Parks Department)
    * Welcome
    * Multi-use concept presentation (familiar to those who attended Council/Commission meeting)
    * Trail design and alignments
    -> Segments
    -> Construction
    * Management plan
    -> Monitoring and enforcement
    -> Maintenance
    * Environmental planning and analysis
    * Public input and comment period

    Mountain bikers should offer:
    * Support for this project
    * Clean up the area, help to build the trail, raise funds for costs
    * Offer to help with the maintenance and monitoring (“eyes and ears”) of the area.
    * Offer to organize a trail maintenance day on the U-con trail
    * Ask the Parks Department to take a bunch of us on a hike though the area and walk the proposed route.

    At the meeting mountain bikers should be:
    * Positive, professional and considerate.
    * Highlight the positive aspects of our recreational activity
    -> Trail maintenance and land stewardship
    -> Fund raising
    -> Introducing kids to positive outdoor activities
    * Don’t emphasize the extreme elements like racing, free riding and dirt jumping
    * Don’t use word “sport” to describe mountain biking (use recreational activity)

    Take the higher ground.
    Try not to inflame the opposition. Judging from my past interactions with our opponents they will call us names, interrupt us and be quite rude. Our opponents will be there and will attempt to kill or slow down this project. They have no solutions to the VERY REAL social and environmental problems that exist in that part of the park:
    * Water quality issues from illegal camping
    * Drug activity and trash
    * Difficulty in law enforcement
    * Public safety threats from fire.

    Our opponents are going to argue:
    * There is no evidence that the multi-use trail will mitigate the illegal activity.
    -> Response: There is evidence that it will - Nationally: Seattle I-5 Colonnade, Highbridge Park NYC, Locally: Pogonip U-Con trail, Depot Park.

    * HIkers (old and young) will be threatened by riders on the trail.
    -> Response: The perception of trail conflict is greater than the actual incidence of trail conflict. A large majority of user group interactions are positive.
    -> Response: If we can’t share the trail then make the new mulit-use trail biker and equestrian only. Hikers have the exclusive access to the rest of the park.

    * Bikes cause serious environmental damage to the trails and forests.
    -> Response: studies have demonstrated that impact by bikes is equal to hikers and less than horses.
    -> Response: erosion is caused by poor trail design and can be corrected with maintenance.

    * Opening this trail to bikes will encourage more unauthorized activity.
    -> Response: Opening the U-Con trail to multi-use DID NOT result in any additional unauthorized trails in Pogonip.

    This is a genuine public safety issue that needs to be addressed. There was a fire in Pogonip 2 weeks ago from the lower section to the rail corridor. It it was not stopped then it could have jumped the tracks and turned into a wild fire and burned a lot more forest including the Pogonip and UCSC. Also, the 120-150 acres of Pogonip is currently closed to the public and this proposal is a solution which will reopen it as a public recreational resource.

    I'm pleased that City staff including the SCPD, SCFD and Parks Department is considering a multi-use trail in Pogonip to mitigate these problems. As mountain bikers we are thankful for the consideration to be part of the solutions to these problems in our community.

    This 1.5 mile scenic multi-use trail will be an amazing recreational resource for locals and visitors to Santa Cruz. It will connect the boardwalk/downtown/levee area with the U-Con trail and provide access to the trails in Wilder/UC from downtown Santa Cruz. This means you can start/end your rides near coffee shops/restaurants/breweries. We hope that it will be ready to ride next summer.

    Thanks for reading and please consider attending this meeting tonight. Tell your friends.

  2. #2
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    Yo - Moderators - can you make this a sticky just for today?

    So, we need warm bodies - who's planning to go? I'm planning to attend and speak (can't make it until 7:45pm though), and a few others from Team Wrong Way are as well. Common peeps - this is easy advocacy - just show up tonight and say you support this trail proposal!

  3. #3
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    I'll be there. I'm really hoping this doesn't turn into a spectacle.

  4. #4
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    I will be there - I think this meeting will be the windsock wrt opposition. Which why as mtn bikers / Cyclists our support is crucial.
    Earn your turns. )'(

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carl Hungus
    I'll be there. I'm really hoping this doesn't turn into a spectacle.
    If what Mark is saying is correct - I'd expect the Sierra Club folks to try to turn it into a spectacle. I think Mark's right that we all need to collectively take the high road and avoid the rude stuff (yes, easier said than done when someone "boos" or interupts you). I think it will be VERY important to hammer on the success stories of Collonadde (I just rode there for the first time a few weekends ago) and Highbridge, which were both essentially plagued by the exact same problems (homeless encampments and needle-use havens).

    One spectacle-like thing that *might* be worthwhile is for us to wear our helmets during the meeting? (probably no full-faces ) I was thinking it might be a good way to show our presence - particularly if there won't be enough time for everyone to speak. Anyhow - I plan to wear mine in...

  6. #6
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    If you have time, PLEASE get in touch with someone from the BRMBA (black rock mountain bike association). The folks up in Oregon have done a good thing with opening up mountain biking to an open space area!
    The arsonist has oddly shaped feet!

  7. #7
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    @#@#$%^$#@#$$

    Quote Originally Posted by mrtoadsc
    Sorry for the late notice but I've been busy these days....
    Dammit---I was just there at Pogonip---could've hung around for the meeting! Now I'm back home in Hollister....

    I could have been the token pro-biker Sierra Club member...oh well!!!

    I was hiking there with my daughter (student @ UCSC), finally saw police presence, a cruiser parked by the clubhouse. I guess the officer(s) were in the woods?

    My daughter and I discussed how absurd it is that Rincon Rd is not a multi-use trail---I hope this is discussed at the meeting also.
    Last edited by Moe Ped; 09-02-2010 at 02:38 PM.
    Content here does not officially represent the CA DPR.

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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtbhead
    I
    One spectacle-like thing that *might* be worthwhile is for us to wear our helmets during the meeting? (probably no full-faces ) I was thinking it might be a good way to show our presence - particularly if there won't be enough time for everyone to speak. Anyhow - I plan to wear mine in...
    No need to wear your helmets nor do we need to show a visual expression of support. The meeting is conducted by the Parks Department who are pretty friendly to recreationalists. They want to work with us and build this trail and we support them. This isn't the type of decision making meeting. That will come later when this project goes to City Council again in November for final approval.

    I think showing up and politely marginalize the fringe anti-mtb elements should be enough.

    This meeting should be informative. There is no need to really speak (which will be at the end of the presentation). Polite nodding when the Parks Superintendent is giving his presentation and polite agreement with other speakers points is enough.

    I will probably do some sort of response during the public input period. I'll take a poll of our supporters in the room at that time.

  9. #9
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    OK - That's different from what you mentioned at the top - seemed like you were asking mtbers to speak (see "at the meeting mountain bikers should be:").

  10. #10
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    As a meth user that frequents pogonip i urge that you give us the peace and quite that we want. Theres no need to fear tree-hugging sierra children, fear the crack heads. I'm gonna take your bikes.
    Sorry i missed the meeting- i would have turned it into a hell of a spectacular spectacle. But you know, meth is a callin.
    Last edited by notflippant; 09-03-2010 at 03:44 PM.

  11. #11
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    Thank you all for attending the meeting. I think the outcome was great and it was really excellent to hear the support of the law enforcement community for this trail. I would say out of the 100 or so that attended 2/3 - 3/4 were supporters of this trail.

    This meeting was covered in the Sentinel:

    http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/localnews/ci_15969938

    True to Sentinel form, they published the article last night and then again this morning. The comments from last nights post were the most interesting.

    http://www.topix.net/forum/source/sa...4C1ACQQQARCJ04

    Next steps in this process:

    1. This proposal will go to City Council for final approval probably in November. We will need a letter writing campaign and a flash mob showing up at the Council meeting to support this proposal.

    2. MBOSC has offered to help Parks and Rec with trail work on the U-Con trail probably in December/January. This would be like a trial run for the construction of the trail. We would like to make an event out of this and would love the support of the community to come out and dig.

    Thanks again for your support in helping to create more legitimate trails in Santa Cruz.

  12. #12
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    Getting connected...

    Quote Originally Posted by mrtoadsc
    True to Sentinel form, they published the article last night and then again this morning. The comments from last nights post were the most interesting.
    Looks like the comments are mostly pro-trail, especially the ones that count. (Santa Cruz residents). I especially liked "Recycled Politicos" comment:

    "Thank you Celia Scott for all you brought to Santa Cruz

    Stunted business and economic growth
    Traffic Jams
    The lovely Beach Flats barrio
    Freelance Camping Sites

    I am not thinking we need your help anymore, you have done quite enough...."


    I feel bad not making the meeting, so I joined MBOSC yesterday so maybe I'll be better connected next time.

    BTW; was anything more said about changing Rincon Road to multi-use? Or is the focus now just on the new trail?
    Content here does not officially represent the CA DPR.

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  13. #13
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    Rincon Road

    Quote Originally Posted by pliebenberg
    I feel bad not making the meeting, so I joined MBOSC yesterday so maybe I'll be better connected next time.

    BTW; was anything more said about changing Rincon Road to multi-use? Or is the focus now just on the new trail?
    Thanks for your support! I suppose I should make more of an effort to keep the community informed or ask someone to do it but I've been stupid busy these days with work and family. I spend so much time on the computer that all I want to do in the evenings is ride or wrench in the garage rather than do the advocacy thing. I have a backlog of email and blog posts and I hope to get caught up on the weekends.

    I digress.

    You hit on a great point. The meeting was only focused on the multi-use trail proposal. A little bird emailed me the 7/21/98 City Council meeting minutes where the decision to use "Trail Alternative B" (multi-use on U-Con only) was decided.

    There was an old promise to look at multi-use access on Rincon Road 1 year after the implementation of the U-Con trail. See attached image. At some point we should pursue opening Rincon road to the University to multi-use. This would allow riders to go past the Limekilns.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Pogonip multi-use trail meeting in Santa Cruz TONIGHT (Wed Sept 1st)-rincon_road_promise.jpg  


  14. #14
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    I had to leave the meeting a little early last night and up to that point almost all of the speakers seemed opposed to the trail with a few exceptions. Hopefully, there was a bit more balance after I left. The trail opponents' main argument seemed to be that there is no evidence that this trail will discourage illicit behavior in Pogonip. This is the equivalent of saying "there is no evidence that alternative energies like solar, wind and biofuels will prevent catastrophic climate change...so we shouldn't bother manufacturing/building them." How would that go over in Santa Cruz?

    Funny that in so called "Progressive" Santa Cruz, these peoples solution to the problem is to basically do nothing. One gentleman who opposed the trail said he "didn't want to see Pogonip go to hell" because of the building of this trail. This is laughable. Dear sir, did you see the pictures of the campsites? Pogonip went to hell a long time ago.

    I love the arrogance too of this community where every person is a friggin expert on everything and knows the situation sooo much better than the people that are dealing with these issues on a daily basis (Police, Fire, Parks department).

  15. #15
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    Shoot. I missed the meeting. Didn't see this until this morning.
    Meh.

  16. #16
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    Carl,

    Thanks for attending. Awesome points about the "regressives".

    You are correct that all the opponents went first so that early leavers (including the Sentinel) were left with the impression that there was a lot of opposition to this proposal. After they exhausted their speakers there were only supporters left other than one or two at the end. The majority of the people spoke in support of this project.

    I applaud all of you for taking the higher ground. Our opponents kept using the same old talking points about fear, ignorance and prejudice about mountain bikes to make their points. I loved the fact that mountain bikers were not afraid to seek the truth by asking the Parks Department, Rangers and Police: "So how much erosion is mountain bikers causing?", "How many incidents of hiker/biker/horse conflict do you deal with on U-Con/DeLaveaga?". U-Con is sustainable with no seasonal closures. Ranger Wallace has never dealt with a hiker/biker conflict issue in 10 years of service. This demonstrated that our opponents arguments are straw men which are easily taken down by the facts from our public servants.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by pliebenberg
    I could have been the token pro-biker Sierra Club member...oh well!!!

    I was hiking there with my daughter (student @ UCSC), finally saw police presence, a cruiser parked by the clubhouse. I guess the officer(s) were in the woods?

    My daughter and I discussed how absurd it is that Rincon Rd is not a multi-use trail---I hope this is discussed at the meeting also.
    There was another pro-bike Sierra Cluber there as well (perhaps a few of them).

    It was revealed at the meeting that the Police department did a sweep and bust of some dealing activity. They tried to arrest 5 people but 3 got away.

    The Police officer's endorsement of the trail was amazing. He stated that this trail will help him with enforcement in the area by making it easier to see and pinch suspects.

  18. #18
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    Ferrentino weighs in...

    I think it's Ferrentino anyways. Dude has a way with words.

    http://www.santacruzmtb.com/104bronson/

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carl Hungus
    I think it's Ferrentino anyways. Dude has a way with words.

    http://www.santacruzmtb.com/104bronson/
    Yes indeed it's the fabulous Mr. F. He attended the meeting last night and I'm really pleased that SCB is 100% behind this project with labor and funds.

  20. #20
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    SCB Rawks!! Thanks Mr. F for being at the meeting and showing your support for more authorized trails in Santa Cruz. Please use your influence to get more of the local bike industry involved in opening up local trails.

    The most important thing that was made clear to me at the meeting was who our opposition really is. I thought they were people who cared about the environment, and just didn't understand that us mountain bikers also love enjoying nature and protecting open spaces for everyone to enjoy. What was made clear to me is the people who don't want this multi-use trail just don't want to share the trail. They are hiding behind the mask of championing preservation of open space, but in reality they just rather not share the trails with mountain bikers and equestrians . They have the NIMBY mentality, and think they are the only ones who are entitled to enjoy Pogonip. How can you be against pushing out the Heroin dealers, ASAP?! The opponents are going to sue until they get an EIR that goes against a multi-use trail. We must remain strong!! I'm very excited about how the community is supporting this multi-use trail!! Let's get her done!!

  21. #21
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    I feel like I'm so removed, even though I am a SC native. I was there for the Santa Cruz High School all class reunion last weekend, and I really felt "home" (and I only live 30 min. away).

    It seems like we all need to treat it like a rear naked choke in MMA - apply delicate pressure until you put them out. Seeing my Santa Cruz littered with needles and junk is depressing. My family has been there for generations, picking the fields to feed the rest of the country strawberries and artichokes. It's a big slap in the face when we can do something to eradicate the evil that goes on up there, and the so-called "caregivers" of the city do nothing.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dion
    Seeing my Santa Cruz littered with needles and junk is depressing. My family has been there for generations, picking the fields to feed the rest of the country strawberries and artichokes. It's a big slap in the face when we can do something to eradicate the evil that goes on up there, and the so-called "caregivers" of the city do nothing.
    Unfortunately, the city is run by those that have probably been here less than "generations" and a certain group keeps getting elected over and over and over. I won't bash UCSC, I went there, but it seems like there is a certain contingent of long time Santa Cruz citizens that either get out voted or don't care. The power structure in this city favors a small contingent up near UCSC and they mostly care about NIMBY issues over the decline of the city as a whole.

    I've only been here 20 years and find it sad. I'd like to see better stewards of municipal policy elected and the gang, vagrant, and drug problems addressed head on.

    -jim

  23. #23
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    So what is the final process here if they don't go with the proposal, are P.D. really gonna hike in and fix the real issue there?

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Obi
    So what is the final process here if they don't go with the proposal, are P.D. really gonna hike in and fix the real issue there?
    In my opinion...if City Council votes no on the trail proposal (they vote in Nov. I believe) it will be business as usual in the Pogonip. PD hikes in all the time and probably does its "best" to fix the real issue but I think their hands are tied to some extent. They go in...try to make a few arrests...they catch some...others get away...turn the ones they catch over to the courts...and they're back out doing the same old cat and mouse a couple months later.

    Honestly, drug abuse on this scale is a huge issue and one without a lot of easy answers (my opinion once again). Is this trail going to stop people from using heroin in Santa Cruz? Of course not. Will it push this activity out of a CITY PARK and more out in the open where maybe it can be managed and "fixed" a little easier? Maybe.

    Personally, I think it's worth a shot.

  25. #25
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    We've seen it work in the noted places (Collonade, etc) so sure, give it a shot I say. That said, honestly, Santa Cruz, heck most of the Hwy9 corridor has always had this sort of problem. I remember a house down the street from my Grandparents w/e house always getting busted and nothing worked up until a year after they sold the place and the new owner shot someone who was breaking in. Meth, Pot, etc, the drugs change but the problem persists.

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