For decades many open space proponents have been tracking Development Plans for the Hahamongna Watershed Park (HWP). One troubling aspect has bedeviled them: the draft Master Plans that included a paved road and parking garage (1998 to 2003)
In 2003 the road and parking garage were taken out of the plan in response to public comment. Since then, city representatives have been saying there is no plan to build the road or parking garage. However, both have been included in the Annex Plan Environmental document and open space proponents fear that a road and garage could be built in the future without public input. The City planners now say that road and parking garage language will be removed from the Annex Plan Environmental document too. So, the overriding question has been: “How can we make sure that the road and parking garage are not resurrected?”
March 2013 Actions
The Department of Public Works solicited public comment on a proposal to use the State of California grant funds associated with the Sycamore Grove Field project (also known as the Multi Benefit Multi Use Project -- MBMU) at Hahamongna Watershed Park for multi-use sports field improvements for Muir High School campus. WPRA wrote in support of the proposal. You can see our letter here.
July 2009 Actions
In separate meetings in July, both the Planning Commission and Design Commission voted to have public, on-site visits before making a decision on the Hahamongna Watershed Park. The most contentious issue is the allowance for a 30-foot-wide, paved,bicycle trail (trimmed from 50-feet wide in previous drafts). Community groups, oppose construction of such a trail. As Mary Barrie of the Friends of Hahamongna says, "The problem with a 30-ft corridor is that it is easily wide enough for a road to be built in the future even if, technically, one is not in the plans at the moment."
The commissions intend to have a combined site visit; and the visit will be a public meeting. It has not been scheduled as of July 16.
Pasadena Star News and Pasadena Now both reported on the background and latest developments regarding this issue. Their articles are at http://www.pasadenastarnews.com/rds_search/ci_12414147 and http://pasadenanow.com/main/2009/07/14/bicycle-trail-at-hahamongna-sparks-debate, respectively.
May 2009 Actions
At the May 12th Park Advisory Committee meeting city representatives said that the references to the road and garage had not been excised because of regulations regarding limited revisions to the Environmental Impact Report, even though there are no plans to actually build either the road or garage.
At the May 19th at the Environmental Advisory Commission meeting city staff told residents that the inclusion of the garage and road in the new plan was an oversight and would be fixed. "The roadway will be removed from the plan's addendum," said Theresa Fuentes, of the City Attorney's Office. "The plan will be edited for removal of the parking garage." For more details see the Pasadena Star News article at: http://www.pasadenastarnews.com/ci_12414147
Some Key Questions to Ask:
What is the purpose for Hahamongna? Is it to be a recreational park or wild, untouched open space – if a bit of both how will these somewhat conflicting goals be reconciled?
There are two additional parking lots in Hahamongna which could be used for overflow parking for the Annex which are not included in the plan. Why not?
How wide will the "recreational greenway" corridor be in the environmental documents?
Will all or some of the infrastructure in the way of the greenway/road be removed for the trail/bikeway?
How will the planned development on the annex property be reconciled with the fact that the Annexd was purchased for open space and recreational uses?
Hahamongna Watershed Park (HWP) Master Plan covers 300-acres of open space that extending north from Devil’s Gate Dam north and into the Arroyo Seco Canyon, on the northwestern edge of the city. In 2005 the city purchased an additional 30 acres of land adjacent to Hahamongna Watershed Park, currently referred to as Hahamongna Annex. This land had previously been owned by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD). The land was purchased with the stipulation that future uses of this property must support open space and recreation. The map below shows the area included in the master plan.