Rancho Palos Verdes City Council

JUNE 29, 2004



DATE: JUNE 29, 2004


Staff Coordinator: Matt Waters, Administrative Analyst


Approve the Parks, Recreation and Open Space Strategic Plan submitted by the Open Space Planning, and Recreation & Parks Task Force to be used as a guiding document for the future of recreation and open space in Rancho Palos Verdes.


On May 21, 2002 the City Council established an Open Space Planning, and Recreation & Parks Task Force to advise the Council on a range of recreation and open space issues affecting residents of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes. Since that time, the Task Force has worked diligently to revise the existing Parks Master Plan that was adopted in 1989. At its January 10, 2004 Tactical Planning Workshop, the City Council identified the updating of the Parks Master Plan as one of its main goals. The Task Force presented a proposed conceptual plan for Upper Point Vicente Park and an update on the Task Force’s progress to the City Council at its January 20, 2004 meeting. After receiving considerable testimony from the public, the City Council decided that Lower Point Vicente should be reserved for passive purposes. Council further directed staff to explore other sites within Rancho Palos Verdes for Girls Softball fields. These actions prompted a revisiting of the Task Force’s mission and remaining tasks. At its April 6, 2004 meeting, the City Council discussed a summary report that outlined the Task Force’s progress and appointed Councilman Douglas Stern to serve as Interim Chair of the Task Force. Council also set June 29, 2004 as a date for a joint City Council/Task Force workshop.

All Task Force Subcommittees submitted their final reports to the Task Force at its May 12, 2004 meeting. Staff then worked with RRM Design Group consultants to incorporate their recommendations into an integrated draft of a Parks, Recreation and Open Space Strategic Plan. The Task Force discussed the Strategic Plan draft at its June 9, 2004 meeting and made a number of changes that have been incorporated into the current draft.


Throughout the Task Force’s existence it has been tasked with updating the Parks Master Plan, but after consulting with RRM Design Group and reviewing the reports and recommendations submitted and approved by the Task Force, the attached document is now

more accurately designated a strategic plan which, if adopted, would serve as a guiding document for future decisions affecting open space and recreation issues. This document provides an outline for potential site-specific implementations that could be considered as funding opportunities arise. Below is a summary of current, significant recreation issues raised by staff, City Council, and the Open Space Task Force.






1. Purchase the Portuguese Bend Nature Preserve.

City Council Tactical Plan objective.

Various plans (NCCP) and agreements must be approved by the City Council, PVPLC and the State.

Approximately $21 million is required to make the purchase. The City share of the cost of the property is $1 million.

2. Resolve the future of the Upper Point Vicente Site through a planning process that starts with identifying all the environmental constraints on the property, including NCCP and hazardous materials issues.

Task Force recommendation.

There are competing uses proposed for the site some of which may not be compatible. The City needs to determine the precise location of the NCCP boundary and any buffering requirements adjacent to that boundary before most of the proposed uses can be considered.

Some of the uses proposed for the site may be funded by partnerships between the city and private or other public agencies. The plan proposed by the Task Force is extensive and costs have not yet been determined. The cost of environmental analysis of the site is not yet known.

3. The Task Force recommended a significant number of "minor improvements" for City park sites. Direct Staff to further research these recommended improvements.

Task Force Recommendation.

There is not yet a comprehensive list of these recommended "minor improvements."

Costs of these "minor improvements" are currently unknown.

4. Determine a location for two or more Girls' Softball Fields. Focus on Eastview Park and Upper Point Vicente Park.

City Council initiative.

Seven potential sites for two or more fields have been identified. Two of the sites, Lower Hesse Park and Grandview Park have generated considerable neighborhood opposition. The sites that seem to have the least opposition and the most potential are Upper Point Vicente Park and Eastview Park.

Point Vicente West $850,000 (two fields) Point Vicente East $1,100,000 (two fields) Eastview $1,700,000 (three fields) These cost estimates do not include new parking lots, restrooms or snack/storage buildings.






5. Redraft the existing Conceptual Trails plan into a document that is more reader friendly and usable by the City and the public. Prepare a status report describing the current status of trails acquisition.

Staff recommendation

The Conceptual Trails Plan was most recently updated and approved by the City Council in 1993.

The Planning Department budget includes $32,000 to perform this work if directed by Council.

6. Complete the expansion of the Point Vicente Interpretive Center.

City Council initiative.


Although the City has acquired this property from the County, staff believes the same deed restrictions that apply to the County for this site will also apply to the City for the development of this property under the approved federal Program of Utilization. The existing building, access road, and parking lot are constrained from being disturbed without environmental clearance from the Dept. of Toxic Substances and Control (DTSC)

The City has allocated $3.5 million for this project. A bid has been received for $3.65 million, however total construction costs, due to construction inspection oversight and engineering expenses, are expected to be significantly higher. An additional $500,000 is needed for phasing in the exhibits.

The body of the Strategic Plan is devoted to a site-by-site description of all City-owned park sites and open space parcels. Each section details the individual site’s acquisition history, any improvements, deed restrictions, potential uses of the sites, implementation strategies, and possible action steps. Agua Armaga Canyon, the Portuguese Bend Landslide area, and Middle/Upper Filiorum, are identified as sites the City is currently attempting to acquire.

The report also summarizes the extensive public outreach effort that was conducted to better assess and identify the community’s goals, ideas, and issues regarding recreation and open space issues. This effort included a professional telephone survey of 500 RPV residents, meetings with stakeholders, and two facilitated public workshops. A motion was made at the Task Force’s June 9, 2004 meeting for the allocation of additional general funds to further analyze the public outreach effort. The motion failed for lack of a second. Reports on the public workshops and the telephone survey have been provided to Task Force members and the City Council. An executive summary of all the public outreach efforts was also provided to the Task Force and City Council and is included in the appendix of the Strategic Plan.


The appropriate use of open space and addressing recreation concerns are two of the most vital issues for residents of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes. From its inception in 2002, the Task Force recognized that a clear and systematic approach was needed to address the magnitude and complexity of recreation and open space issues in this community. This strategic plan is intended to serve as a guiding document for addressing the future planning of the City’s parks, recreation and open space resources.

Respectfully Submitted,

Ron Rosenfeld

Director, Recreation and Parks


Les Evans

City Manager


Parks, Recreation and Open Space Strategic Plan

Notes From the June 5, 2004 Visits to Potential Girls Softball Field Sites

Staff Notes Regarding Conceptual Trails Plan

Public Correspondence