MROSD buying 1,300 acres linking Skyline to the sea

By on Wed, January 21, 2009

The Midpeninsula Open Space District (MROSD) is considering purchasing four properties totally 1,300 acres that will connect its Skyline Ridge property with the sea, reports Palo Alto Weekly.

The district’s board will meet at 2 pm Thursday, Jan 22, at the Elkus 4-H Ranch Retreat Center at 1500 Purisima Creek Road. The meeting will be followed at 3:15 p.m. by public tours of the properties. Reservations for the tour must be make by Wednesday by calling Jean Chung, real property administrative assistant at the district, 650-691-1200.

The properties lie due east of the Cowell Ranch State Beach. At the upper end they connect with MROSD’s 3,361-acre Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve that touches Skyline Boulevard just north of Swett Road.

At the lower end they connect with properties over which the Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) has an easement, completing the link to the Pacific Ocean.

The combined value of the lands is estimated at between $10 million and $12 million, although precise costs are still being negotiated, according to Rudy Jurgensen, the district’s public affairs manager.

The largest of the four parcels is a 450-acre upper portion of the Elkus Ranch property owned by the University of California, which would retain control of the Elkus Ranch facilities.

Two properties, the 340-acre Lobitos Ridge and the 260-acre Blue Brush Canyon, are owned by POST, which acquires lands and turns them over to public agencies.

The final property is 250-acres of the uplands, non-agricultural portion of the Guisti family’s Purisima Farms.