San Luis Obispo County

Land Conservancy Plans to Preserve 900 Acres in Pismo Beach

PISMO BEACH, Calif- - A large 900-acre piece of land in Pismo Beach is up for sale and the Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo County is hoping to make the purchase.

"This has been the same view that I had when I bought the house in 2000," said Sheila Blake, neighbor to the project. "This is what people want, this is what people come here for, they come here for the open ground, the open land, the nature."

Right now land is blocked off from the public. The land conservancy hopes to change that.

"We want to create a public park where equestrians, mountain bikers, hikers, can go on and enjoy what our Central Coast has to offer," said Kaila Dettman, the executive director of the conservancy.

The plan is for 10 miles of trails and no future development, except for a staging area.

"We would want to establish a nice formal staging area at the entrance to the preserve, so that would be along Mattie Road and Highway 101 to provide a parking area and some interpretive panels for people to learn about the property," said Dettman.

The price tag for the property is $11.7 million. The conservancy has requested the majority of the funding from two state agencies. The rest it will have to raise on its own.

"We are hoping to raise privately from local donors here in our county, donations from foundations, individual donors, and also we are hoping our local governments can bring some money to it as well," said Dettman.

Residents like Blake hope that everything goes as planned.

"There are so many people who just want to be here, and they just want to enjoy the nature, and this is a fabulous addition to us,' said Blake. 

The conservancy said the project will likely draw more tourists to the area. It estimates 3,000 visitors to the property a month.

The conservancy will be working on the project under a tight deadline. The land owner has given it until July-1-to raise the funds.

It hopes to open the land to the public by spring 2015.


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