Chaparral in the hills of Tesla Park - photo Mack Casterman

California sagebrush scrub and a stand of desert olive scrub (a sensitive natural community) in the hills of Tesla Park – photo Mack Casterman

EBCNPS is working with Friends of Tesla Park to establish the Tesla Park land in eastern Alameda County as a natural and historic park and preserve for low-impact recreation. The State Parks Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Division (OHMVR), however, continues on its EIR march to turn this botanically rich spot into a haven for off-highway vehicles.

Long recognized for its biodiversity, our East Bay Chapter identified the Tesla Park area in Corral Hollow as one of our Botanical Priority Protection Areas. These rolling hills along corral Hollow Creek are home to a large variety of rare, threatened, and endangered plant and wildlife species and are a migration route for many bird species, mountain lions, and tule elk and more. They contain Native American artifacts (some at estimated at over 5,000 years old) and hold the site of the abandoned historic coal-mining town of Tesla. It’s a perfect site for a low-impact park and nature preserve managed to protect the ecological resources.

We need your help throughout the EIR process.  The OHMVR Division recently issued three Concepts for Tesla Park that all provide for OHV use from Intensive Use to Less Intensive Use. Public Comments must be submitted by the July 15, 2013 deadline.

Now is the time to speak up for Tesla Park and reject the Concepts for OHV use in this important native landscape.

Workshop materials can be reviewed at http://carnegie.engage-sites.com/. You may submit your comments online at the Carnegie general plan web site, or email your comments to carnegiegp@parks.ca.gov  If you use the online OHMVR Comment Card to reject the 3 Concepts, take care when completing it as it is structured to force support of the OHMVR Concepts.

The 3 OHV Use Concepts for Tesla need to be REJECTED because:

  • Biological and Cultural Resource Guidelines, Constraint Map and Recreation Suitability Map which are the basis for the Concepts are inadequate and not supported by scientific data
  • There should be NO OHV Use in Tesla Park whether in free ride areas (now called distributed riding areas) or on trails
  • A Non-OHV Use Alternative must be evaluated in the General Plan development and DEIR stage because it is the only Alternative that can protect Tesla Park’s sensitive resources.

If you are planning to submit by email, feel free to use the form letter below:

Dear planners:

The proposed Concepts for the Tesla site are all totally unacceptable. All three Concepts must be rejected because they all provide for OHV use in the sensitive Tesla park land and do not protect its natural resources. You must study an alternative–not a no-action alternative–that excludes off-highway vehicles from the site and actively preserves its natural native landscape and historic values for non-motorized public enjoyment, research and education.

Please share this Tesla Park Alert with all of your contacts and ask them to email OHMVR to oppose the OHMVR plan for Tesla Park.  We need to provide overwhelming support to protect Tesla as a Non-OHV park and preserve throughout the EIR process.

Please email Mack Casterman at conservation@ebcnps.org for more information or if you have any questions.  Thank you for your continued help to Save Tesla Park.

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