Why are the mountain bike trails confined to such a limited area and small elevation profile rather than from the top of the hills such as split rock baldy and baldy's shoulder?
Thank you for your question. The mountain bike infrastructure,
as well as other recreational facilities, are sited in the north-central section of
the park, which has been most impacted in the past due to logging and other
human uses, thus preserving the highest value habitat for native plants and
wildlife. By concentrating these facilities together, large areas of the site
will experience low to moderate frequency of recreational use, similar to other
Ridgeline parks that host the Ridgeline Trail. The mountain bike trails were aligned with the
goal of giving mountain bikers the best experience possible while balancing
other recreational and ecological goals. There is a mountain bike trail
proposed connecting Mount Baldy to Suzanne Arlie Park, as well as one from
Split Rock Hill. Additionally, all shared-use trails and gravel roads will be
open to mountain bikes. The total miles of proposed trail that will be open
to mountain bikes at Suzanne Arlie Park is currently 11.4.
Will the park Susanna Arlie park be ADA friendly. Can senior citizens walk safely?
Thank you for your question. The master plan for Suzanne
Arlie Park includes approximately 2 miles of “barrier free” walking trails.
This trail type has an average grade of 5% or less with a maximum grade of 8%.
They are built with highly compacted gravel to accommodate wheeled mobility
devices. These trails should be accessible to most seniors, including those
using mobility assistance. For the spry senior, the Ridgeline Trail is also an
option, as are the graveled roads that cross the site. We hope to build this
park in a way that is both accessible and stimulating for the widest range of
What exactly is being done to conserve space for wildlife, wetlands, and native plants? I am concerned the creation of the park will not provide enough habitat for native species.
We appreciate and share your concern for habitat and native
species, therefore protecting this important aspect of the park system is one
of the express goals of the master plan. The first steps of habitat
preservation, restoration, and management are already under way. Ecologists
working on our ecological services team along with highly credentialed local
ecologists have been conducting rare plant surveys and mapping native species
in the park for several years. They have also worked to improve native
vegetation cover and the habitat structure of several important habitat types, including:
oak savanna, oak woodland, upland prairie and wet prairie. This work has been
carried out by removing dense thickets of invasive shrub and tree species such
as blackberry, single-seed hawthorn, pear and cherry from approximately half of
the park. In addition, Douglas-fir trees were removed in localized areas where
they were encroaching on legacy Oregon white oak and California black oak
trees. An ecological controlled burn last year helped stimulate the growth of
native wildflowers while also keeping invading woody vegetation and introduced
grasses in check. There is a long-range plan in place to continue to enhance
the existing high-value habitat in the park, outlined in the master plan.
In addition to all of the targeted efforts to improve
habitat, the master plan sites the high-density recreational facilities in the
north-central section of the site, which has been most impacted in the past due
to logging and other human uses, thus preserving the highest value habitat for
native plants and wildlife. By concentrating these facilities together, large
areas of the site will experience low to moderate frequency of recreational
use, similar to other Ridgeline parks that host the Ridgeline Trail.
My name is Spencer Ewing, Professional Downhill racer, freerider, and core member of the local MTB community.
I would love to see some high-quality mountain bike trails come out of this project. Eugene is in need of a closer (and better) legalized trail system. Rogue (illegal) trails have been built all over this area around LCC, however, their minimalist, unsanctioned nature makes them hazardous, destructive and exclusive. It's time we put eugene on the map with a handful of WELL BUILT and ADVANCED trails that will bring in new riders, challenge experts, benefit local economy, increase public transit usage and tourism, without burning fuel or driving hours as a requirement.
We have a strong local mtb community to supply volunteer hours and a dedicated team of professional riders able to plan, design, build, and test all trails and features. The benefits of this zone would be immense!
Thank you for your consideration.
We appreciate your enthusiasm Spencer! We heard from many that
high quality mountain biking infrastructure is a priority, which is why the
current plan for Suzanne Arlie includes approximately 4.4 miles of mountain
bike optimized trails, 4.8 miles of shared use trails and 2.2 miles of gravel
access road open to bikes, for a total of 11.4 trail miles for mountain biking.
This is in addition to a 50-acre mountain bike skills park which will include
stacked loop trails and skills features. We hope to see you at the public
meeting on December 9th!
I didn't see any mention of horse access on the master plan diagram. Is there any thought of allowing horseback riding in the park? I live in Pleasant Hill, but own property in Eugene.
Good question. A small but very engaged
group of equestrian advocates attended all our previous workshops, participated
in all our surveys, and provided us a list of minimum requirements and
amenities. We discussed this issue at length with parks staff and
management and for a number of reasons decided not to include equestrian
facilities at this time, although we have left open a window for future
potential inclusion. Reasons included current city regulations not allowing
horses in parks, the relatively limited size of the site for a functional
equestrian trail system, and that in our survey trails for horseback riders
received the lowest overall score for desired facilities which is reflective of
the urban population that the City primarily serves and which funds acquisition
and development of park facilities.
the Master Plan does include the following language regarding equestrian access
under Goal 1: Recreational Trails, Objective 1b (see page 43)
Action: Continue to evaluate options for
limited future equestrian access to the park on designated park roads.
Equestrian facilities such as hitching rails, loading ramps, and trailer
parking are not currently proposed for the park, so users would originate from
neighboring properties if permitted.
We understand this will be a disappointment to our equestrian friends, but the
plan language will allow for future access if or when conditions warrant.
Thank you for your question!