Black Oak Basin Land Management Plan

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We would like your input on our draft land management plan for one of our newest additions to the park system, Black Oak Basin.

The plan strives to balance opportunities for public access while prioritizing habitat protection. Conservation values are prioritized at Black Oak Basin (BOB) partly because they are our community’s values and partly because a conservation easement is in place for BOB through the grant program that funded the majority of the park’s acquisition. We want to know, given this, did we strike a good balance of providing access and protecting wildlife habitat and native plant communities? Are there elements of either access or habitat work that we missed?

Read more in the Project Summary and Draft Land Management Plan.

About Black Oak Basin

Black Oak Basin is one of the newest additions to the parks and open space system in Eugene. The addition of BOB creates a complex of nearly 300 connected acres of city parkland with neighboring Coryell Ridge and Moon Mountain. Hendricks Park and the Ribbon Trail are a short ¼-mile away. The three connected parks are home to excellent examples of rare Willamette Valley oak and prairie habitat and provide a meaningful conservation opportunity close to our urban center.

We would like your input on our draft land management plan for one of our newest additions to the park system, Black Oak Basin.

The plan strives to balance opportunities for public access while prioritizing habitat protection. Conservation values are prioritized at Black Oak Basin (BOB) partly because they are our community’s values and partly because a conservation easement is in place for BOB through the grant program that funded the majority of the park’s acquisition. We want to know, given this, did we strike a good balance of providing access and protecting wildlife habitat and native plant communities? Are there elements of either access or habitat work that we missed?

Read more in the Project Summary and Draft Land Management Plan.

About Black Oak Basin

Black Oak Basin is one of the newest additions to the parks and open space system in Eugene. The addition of BOB creates a complex of nearly 300 connected acres of city parkland with neighboring Coryell Ridge and Moon Mountain. Hendricks Park and the Ribbon Trail are a short ¼-mile away. The three connected parks are home to excellent examples of rare Willamette Valley oak and prairie habitat and provide a meaningful conservation opportunity close to our urban center.

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    Hello, I really like the idea of helping out and conserving this area. I believe natural habitats can be protected and flourish, and the animals and living beings in it. I was wondering if the herbicide treatments affect the surrounding animals and insects? Other animals might get the herbicide-used plants and get sick. If they do affect is there another more safe way we can eliminate invasive species? -Yosuke

    Yosuke Shibata asked about 2 months ago

    Yosuke,

    Thank you for your support of our habitat protection and enhancement efforts and for sharing your concerns.

    Eugene Parks and Open Space takes an integrated approach to managing vegetation that includes manual and mechanical methods like hand pulling and cutting, mowing and mastication with larger equipment. These non-chemical means are often used first or in conjunction with herbicides to have a more significant impact on the invasive species and hopefully reduce the amount or number of times treatment is required to control the target species. We try to balance the desire to use less herbicide (one of our goals as well) with the effectiveness of the treatments to restore habitat for plants and animals. Eugene Parks and Open Space has an Integrated Pest Management Policy and Manual which is available online. In the manual, we share what herbicides are approved for use in Eugene’s parks and natural areas. We do our best to review existing databases and other lists to determine if an herbicide is toxic to humans, bees, and aquatic life and how to reduce the likelihood of impact to sensitive species while still giving us the tools we need to accomplish habitat and species enhancement goals.

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    I am unable to access Zoom, and therefore cannot participate in the public meeting. My questions and concerns I listed in the survey, but specifically I want to ask about parking and access for the area, and the use of OHVs on the trail system.

    shelbycj asked 8 months ago

    Sorry that you were unable to use Zoom. If you're interested, the meeting was recorded and will be posted on the Engage Eugene site. 

    Parking is currently only available on the street at the end of Bloomberg Road. The City asks folks to be respectful of the neighbors and their ingress and egress needs and to not block the gated entrances. In the longer term, we intend to have parking at what is now known as Bloomberg Park. 

    OHVs, ATVs, and any other unauthorized motorized vehicles are prohibited on the site. 

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    I live by Moon Mountain and BoB and regularly hike, trail run and bike through the existing old forest roads. How can we as community enhance and expedite the construction of sustainable trails (both shared use or where appropriate, individual use for hikers or mountain bikers). I have noticed several illicit camping sites in recent years and even remnants of fires. While I of course support other city initiatives in help the unhoused, illicit camping and fires is a big threat to that ecosystem and on the wrong day could destroy the entire forest and all the homes around it. Developing and enhances legitimate use seems the best way disrupt and crowd out illicit use while preserving the ecology of the area.

    BenHansen asked 8 months ago

    Glad you are using the system and thanks for the support. We agree that typically bringing desired uses to a site typically reduces the illicit activities. We will be maintaining the current unpaved roads and footpaths on site through mowing. There may also be some opportunities for volunteer efforts down the road. The City has found in other projects that sequencing larger scale habitat work like the shrub and small tree mastication and potential selective thinning planned for this site prior to putting significant work into the trails results in a better outcome for both efforts. 

    Please report illicit camping through either Park Watch or the Public Works Service request link below. Of course, if you see a fire on site, use your judgment on calling 911. 

    https://www.eugene-or.gov/2411/Park-Watch---Report-A-Safety-Issue

    https://www.eugene-or.gov/1776/Maintenance-Service-Request

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    What are the plans to prevent and protect the area from wildfires? The end of the road outside the park frequently has parked cars overnight and hazards (needles, used condoms, bags of trash) - how will the city work to maintain the area and safety?

    Localresident asked 8 months ago

    Thanks for the questions. Regarding the risk of wildfire, there are several actions identified in the land management plan that will go a long way towards reducing the likelihood of catastrophic wildfire. and enable fire-fighting personnel to better access the area should a fire break out. Specifically, we have as a priority to remove dense thickets of invasive small trees and shrubs including Scotch broom, Himalayan blackberry and English hawthorn and provide on-going maintenance to reduce the vegetative fuel loads on the property. In addition to reducing wildfire fuel loads, this activity enhances oak and prairie habitat, provides opportunity to legitimate public use and facilitates better access for emergency personnel. In the land management plan, we also list the creation and maintenance of fuel breaks along park boundaries. 

    Now that the area is a park, the City will be visiting the site more often. Also, as more legitimate use increases at the site (hiking, biking, wildlife watching), we typically see illicit activity decline. You can report problems to Park Watch 

    https://www.eugene-or.gov/2411/Park-Watch---Report-A-Safety-Issue

    or call the Public Works front office to report issues as they arise as well (541-682-4800). 

    This web site can be used to submit service requests as well. 

    https://www.eugene-or.gov/1776/Maintenance-Service-Request


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    Any consideration for a disc golf course in the park area?

    Localresident asked 8 months ago

    Thanks for the question. There are restrictions at Black Oak Basin in terms of allowable uses. Those restrictions are in place because most of the funding for the purchase of the park came from the Willamette Wildlife Mitigation Program (WWMP). The WWMP program prioritizes funding projects that will protect rare habitats in the Willamette Valley. Black Oak Basin contains oak and prairie habitat and associated species. These habitats have experienced about a 95% decrease in their distribution in the Willamette Valley since the 1850's. Opportunities to protect and enhance that habitat are rare. The City can provide compatible public uses to a level agreed upon by the granting agencies. Disc golf was not an agreed upon activity at Black Oak Basin. 

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    Are there plans for maintainence of existing mountain biking trails and development of new trails? Compared with similarly situated communities (Corvallis and Bend, OR, Fort Collins and Boulder, CO) , Eugene-Springfield has a severe dearth of legal and developed mountain bike trails, requiring enthusiasist to drive significant distances (e.g. Oakridge) to recreate. Environmentally sensitive siting of trails in Black Oak Basin could be combined with additional trails in Suzanne Arlie and Coryell Ridge parks to create a local mountain biking destination that could be accessed by human power rather than automobiles.

    Cham-O-Te Lars asked 8 months ago

    The short answer is "yes." If you are able to access Appendix D on the project page, you can review the proposed future trails at Black Oak Basin. The vast majority will make use of existing roads to site shared use trails, and we have identified a MTB-specific trail in the north central part of the property that we plan to retain and maintain. Looking more broadly at our system and the need for MTB facilities, the City is putting a lot of energy and planning into bike trail resources at Suzanne Arlie park. We see this as the destination location for MTB activity in our system. We'd like to continue to add trails (MTB, shared use, and pedestrian only) in areas that are more appropriate for that kind of intense use. Black Oak Basin, Coryell Ridge, and Moon Mountain all support high quality and diverse habitats that are rare in the Willamette Valley and so will not likely be appropriate as destinations for intensive recreation but could be used as transportation corridors for bike and pedestrian access to other parts of our system. 

Page last updated: 01 Mar 2022, 03:13 PM