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Clean, Restore, and Open Newport Banning Ranch

This petition had 7,807 supporters

Newport Banning Ranch deserves a real solution. Let’s clean, restore, and open it for the environment and for our community.

In 1947, Banning Ranch was transitioned from open grazing pastures and scenic coastline into an oil field development.

Today, it is a fenced-off, industrial brownfield of 401 acres scattered with oil derricks and pipelines, decaying asphalt roadways and the leftovers of its industrial past. Proactive and thoughtful intervention is needed to restore this special area and expand access so that all in the community can enjoy its scenic vistas and rich biodiversity.

Newport Banning Ranch’s proposal to clean the oil field property, restore its wildlife habitat and establish permanent funding to the Newport Banning Land Trust to manage and protect more than 330 acres of open space and natural areas offers an outstanding solution. Highlights of the proposal include:

1.       Privately Funded: No Taxpayer money will be used to clean, restore and provide open public access to the property.

2.       Nature Preserve: The project will create walking and hiking trails, providing access to the California coastline that has been shut to the public for decades.

3.       Land Stewardship: The Newport Banning Land Trust will protect the open space and more than seven miles of hiking trails that connect directly to the Santa Ana River Trail, resulting in a 28-mile hiking and biking trail that stretches from Riverside to the edge of Orange County.

4.       Oversight: A voluntary committee of environmentalists, educators and scientists will guide the Land Trust’s preservation and stewardship efforts. They will provide educational opportunities for local school children, adults and seniors to learn about nature and rare habitats.

5.       Preservation: Less than 20 percent (70 acres) of the 401-acre property will be used for 895 homes (5% of which meet state guidelines for very low income housing), a 75 room boutique hotel, a 20 bed hostel, and neighborhood commercial center, the creation of which will fund the preservation of the other 330 acres in perpetuity by Newport Banning Land Trust.

This proposal represents the best opportunity to save Banning Ranch and open the coastline to the entire community for generations to come.

We urge the Coastal Commission to approve the clean-up, restoration, and revitalization of the Newport Banning Ranch oil field. Doing so will create vital environmental protection and improve public access to the California coastline.

Join the Newport Banning Ranch Land Trust effort to clean, restore, and open Banning Ranch.


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