State OKs $215,000 for Parkland Acquisition

The state is expected soon to give the cities of Glendale and La Canada Flintridge a total of $215,000 to buy about 200 acres of scenic parkland for the Rim of the Valley Trail Corridor, a network of mountain hiking and equestrian trails that planners hope one day will ring the San Fernando and La Crescenta valleys.

The Santa Monica Mountain Conservancy, a state agency dedicated to preserving the mountains, recently voted to award Glendale $125,000 to purchase a 100-acre parcel of undeveloped land between the Burbank border and Brand Park. Neighboring La Canada Flintridge received $90,000 to buy two parcels, totaling 100 acres, south of the county-owned Descanso Gardens.

Hikers are now, in effect, trespassing on the privately owned tracts, officials said. The land acquisition, if completed, will fill in crucial gaps in the publicly owned property along the trail corridor.

Both cities have to negotiate the purchases with the current owners of the land, who have expressed interest in selling, officials said. The municipalities, not the state, will control the land after acquisition.

The Glendale land would allow trails through Brand Park to hook up with trails in Burbank's Wildwood Canyon Park and with fire trails in the Verdugo Mountains.

In La Canada Flintridge, the two parcels include parts of Cherry Canyon and the so-called Lanterman property owned by the University of Southern California.

The money for the acquisition is to come from $750,000 in state parkland bonds. The funds were appropriated for the corridor by the state Legislature in September.

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