A Park in the Heart of Malibu is Better

EcoMalibu envisions a Central Park in the heart of the city that provides the recreational amenities identified in the 2012 Parks and Recreation Master Plan including: 2.5 miles of hiking, biking and equestrian trails, an Olympic size outdoor pool, 20,000 sq. ft. teen center, dog park, fields for soccer, football, lacrosse, baseball, track & field…, parking for 630 vehicles, multiple picnic areas, 7,000 sq. ft. of kid’s playground areas, an outdoor adventure facility, and a 15,000 sq. ft. skateboard park. The new park in the heart of Malibu will include three wetland habitat areas that clean polluted wastewater and stormwater before it enters the Malibu Creek, Lagoon and Surfrider Beach. A central park could replace 1.6 million sq. ft. of proposed commercial buildings which are estimated to generate a minimum 20,000 additional vehicle trips per day. Additional traffic in Malibu is unfathomable and will further degrade the quality of life for Malibu residents and visitors alike. The community has voted overwhelmingly to support open space and oppose developments that would increase traffic.

The City proposes to place many of the above listed park amenities in the pristine coastal bluffs habitat immediately adjacent to Bluff’s park. Constructing these facilities adjacent to Bluffs Park would destroy one of the largest and most pristine coastal bluff habitats in the Santa Monica Bay Watershed.   The State of California considered this property so special that they used tax dollars to acquire and protect this magnificent property. These bluffs are also considered sacred by the Chumash people. It is likely that concerned community organizations will challenge whether or not the City has the legal right to convert a property purchased by the State for open space into parking lots and ball fields. The Malibu community would be far better served by acquiring property in the heart of Malibu and creating the central park in the Civic Center area rather than destroy these bluff’s. The Malibu community needs to ensure that the City’s future will maintain the character and quality of life that attracts us all to this special place.