Commerce Department Upholds Coastal Commission Decision
The Sierra Club's Friends of the Foothills campaign recently won an important victory when the Commerce Department ruled to uphold the California Coastal Commission's rejection of a proposed toll road at San Onofre State Beach.
For over 10 years the Sierra Club has tirelessly fought a proposed 16-mile toll road through California's 5th most popular state park. This project would have destroyed nearly 60% of the park, including the San Mateo Campground; a pristine watershed and world-renowned Trestles surf beach; a land conservancy and Native American burial grounds.
The decision by the Commerce Department is a victory for the thousands of Californians, from Eureka to San Diego, who have spent years fighting to protect San Onofre State Beach. This is a victory for all our state parks, for if this road would have been approved it would have opened the door for development in all our state parks.
Over the years the Sierra Club created a strong movement of community residents, surfers, campers and environmentalists who attended many hearings and broke attendance records at many of them. Including the California Coastal Commission hearing, where over 3,000 people attended and the Commerce Department hearing where nearly 2,500 people attended.
The Sierra Club began fighting this toll road over ten years ago, starting with a march of 40 people in downtown San Clemente and ending with thousands of people at the final hearings. This victory proves that when people come together, and don't give up, we can really make a difference.
While our fight still continues, this victory represents a death nail in the coffin of this ill-conceived project. The Sierra Club, along with thousands of volunteers, will continue to protect San Onofre State Beach, the San Mateo Campground and Trestles Beach for future generations to enjoy.
Sierra Club would like to thank our partners in the Save San Onofre Coalition, whose help was invaluable in achieving this victory!! We would also like to thank all the countless volunteers who worked so hard and so long to help ensure the San Mateo Campground, Trestles Beach and the San Mateo Watershed remain pristine for future generations to enjoy.
Friends of the Foothills