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Wildfire Recovery for the Nation’s Largest Urban Park – News

The Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area (SMMNRA) is the largest urban national park in the United States, encompassing over 150,000 acres of mountains and coastline in Los Angeles and Ventura counties. The National Park Service (NPS) is currently asking the public to provide comments on the redevelopment of sites within the SMMNRA that were burned in the devastating 2018 Woolsey Fire. Specifically, the NPS is initiating a public scoping phase to kick off the preparation of an environmental assessment under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).   

The proposed recovery work would replace facilities at three sites: Paramount Ranch, Rocky Oaks, and Peter Strauss Ranch. The NPS planning team is evaluating the restoration of visitor services, employee housing, and cultural features. During this initial public scoping period, the following types of comments are particularly helpful:  

  • Information about the project area that the NPS should consider during the analysis,
  • Information about how you use the project area and how the project might affect that use,  
  • Other projects or activities that might affect or be affected by the project, 
  • Resource and other impacts that should be considered, and 
  • Other ideas, studies, data, or alternatives for meeting  project objectives.  

There will be two opportunities to comment formally on the proposed project: 1) now during scoping and 2) following release of the environmental assessment. During the current scoping phase, the NPS invites the public to submit written suggestions, comments, and concerns regarding the proposed project. All comments must be received or postmarked by midnight, July 16, 2021. 

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