Highway 17 Wildlife and Trail Crossing

Jun 20th, 2019

Help the Ridge Trail Solve Complex Crossings like Highway 17!

Have you ever driven Highway 17 and thought it was harrowing? Now imagine you are a hiker, biker or mountain lion. Help us provide safe crossings for outdoor enthusiasts and wildlife, which will connect over 30,000 acres of protected public lands on both sides of Highway 17 and create over 50 continuous miles of Ridge Trail. And Highway 17 is not the only complex crossing along the planned trail route. As the Ridge Trail proceeds to completion, some of our biggest obstacles will be complex and expensive crossings such as Highways 92, 35, 4, 680 and the railroads at Niles Canyon Road.

Why:
This is a critical gap for both wildlife and regional trails. The Ridge Trail believes that both wildlife and humans are important trail users and that careful and balanced planning will create the most elegant solution. Wildlife supporters and their advocates have done an admirable job of voicing wildlife crossing needs. However, because they became involved in the project at an earlier stage, there is a possible imbalance of public comments and prioritization regarding the project. Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District (Midpen) reached out to the Ridge Trail Council to rally trail advocates and to help fundraise to complete the crossing and the trail connections leading up to the crossing.

What:
Attend the Public Worksop in July (exact date and location to be determined.) Register with Midpen to review the project reports and get workshop date and location updates. Share the project with your friends and neighbors. 

Midpen is leading the project in partnership with Caltrans to review current crossing options. The next step will be to move the most feasible choice through the Caltrans project approval, environmental review process (State and Federal), permitting, design and construction. The earliest the crossings could be completed is 2025.

Funding need:
The Ridge Trail needs $10,000 to attend meetings, review planning documents, organize community members and volunteers to advocate for this important regional trail connection.

Additional funding will be needed at a later date to complete the trail crossings and the trail gaps leading up to the crossings.


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