Greenbelt Alliance’s signature At Risk is the definitive research on the Bay Area’s farms, ranches, and natural areas at risk of being lost forever to sprawl development. In an effort to bring these lands to the public view, we have real life stories told by the dedicated local residents who fight to keep them free from sprawl.
When considering the significant impact that development has to open spaces and agricultural lands, we must consider the values these lands provide to the Bay Area.
Amid the open spaces of this rural area east of Danville, a developer wants to build houses on a relatively small parcel of land — 30 acres — and has scaled back his proposal over several years to appease neighbors.
2015 was a big year for open space protection in the Bay Area. The Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) voted to expand the region’s Priority Conservation Area (PCA) Program significantly. Priority Conservation Areas are exactly what they sound like: natural areas, recreation lands, farms, ranches, and urban open spaces that should be protected from development. Local governments nominate open spaces as PCAs, and ABAG vets and approves the nominations. Now that the PCA Program has been expanded, there are 165 PCAs across the Bay Area, covering over 2 million acres.
Funding approved by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) will give new life to efforts to preserve more open space throughout the Bay Area, including the Tri-Valley. The commission voted to increase significantly its investment in conservation by expanding its first-in-the-nation Priority Conservation Area (PCA) grant program by over 60%.
On November 18, the Metropolitan Transportation Commission voted to significantly increase its investment in conservation by expanding its first-in-the-nation Priority Conservation Area grant program by over 60% to $16.4 million. This is a major validation of the importance of safeguarding these lands from sprawl.
Conservation is no longer just about protecting the open spaces outside of our cities and towns; it’s also about protecting the natural resources within our cities and towns.
It’s official. Our efforts to protect our greenbelt has resulted in the Association of Bay Area Government (ABAG) designating nearly half a million acres of new Priority Conservation Areas (PCAs). The new PCAs will cover an area more than 13 times the size of San Francisco!
With the 2017 update to Plan Bay Area well underway, Greenbelt Alliance has developed several recommendations on how to improve one of the most important pieces of that update, the second round of the OneBayArea Grant Program (OBAG).
Urban Greening Priority Conservation Areas are an investment in our neighborhoods’ natural resources that will create healthier environments for humans and wildlife while also cutting long-term costs and increasing land value.