The Parks, Recreation, and Open Space ad hoc team continues to move forward with discussion and action on finding activities to enhance the recreation options in the area of the East Fiscalini Ranch designated for a community park. Though there have been many suggested uses, along with a well-researched Master Plan, not much has happened outside the development of the dog park.
The committee has taken an open and inclusive approach to revisit the possibilities for the land, actively engaging with and seeking input from every corner of the community. Over the past months participation in community meetings has grown, attracting interested and concerned residents into the discussion. The overarching philosophy of the ad hoc is – every voice matters, and every concern or suggestion is captured and discussed. The results, to my eye, have been terrific.
The forum takes on the concerns in a collaborative, positive way, with questions encouraged, responses backed with facts and data, with none of the harshness and pugnacious attitudes often seen in public discourse. I leave the meetings recharged, believing that things can happen without frivolous conflict.
Such was the outcome of the meeting held on Saturday, April 1, at the Chamber of Commerce building. Community members took the lead in further defining three main project opportunities. They presented what the projects are, what they could reasonably cost, and how they would fit into the footprint of the designated area.
Community member Shannon Sutherland led the discussion on exercise stations. Shannon did fantastic research, contacting various manufacturers and providers of such stations. Options discussed included everything from simple, pressure-treated, build-it-yourself stations to powder-coated metal fixtures and extruded, molded resin modules. Each option has plusses and minuses, and as the conversation moves forward within the PROS Commission, it will be refined and shared with the community and the CCSD Board.
Community members Mark and Susan Garman presented their work on the proposed Disc (frisbee) Golf course. The enthusiastic pair have invested a good amount of their time visiting systems around the county and brought a collection of photographs and descriptions of styles and materials used to build and maintain different-sized options. It was clarifying to see the pictures, as they demonstrated the ease of integrating this low-impact, environmentally sensitive, and accessible sport into the existing natural beauty of the East Ranch. The Garman’s research also included a first-pass look at potential costs for a course’s design, build, and maintenance. The figures are subject to change after a more detailed review by a course designer and all the appropriate staff to ensure compliance with the existing EIR and use conditions.
PROS Commissioner Kermit Johanson presented his findings and recommendations for enhancing the existing trails to accommodate runners and ensure ADA compliance. He shared a color-coded topographical map showing where the enhancements would fall within the existing footprint and a rough estimate of cost and effort based on configuration, materials, and labor sources.
Each presenter fielded questions and concerns and, in collaboration with the PROS ad hoc members, will present the information to the full PROS Commission, get input, and formulate a unified presentation to the CCSD Board and the public at an upcoming Board meeting.
After all the presentations and discussions, the attendees were asked – Do you support moving forward with the next steps for the proposed projects? Every hand went up in favor, including representatives of the CCSD Board, Beautify Cambria, Cambria Community Council, concerned residents from the surrounding neighborhood, members of the business community, and long-time residents and parents.
The PROS Commission will hold its regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday, April 4, at 10:00 am at the Vet’s Hall. The session will also be available via ZOOM.
Everyone is invited and encouraged to join in, listen, question, and share ideas.
Questions and thoughts can also be sent to the ad hoc group at
Beautiful Cambria in action.