It is unclear when looking at the county parks planning documents (EIRs, Errata, Presentations, etc.) what the impact of the new project will be on the park and the communities that use it. First, it is important to understand how the community uses the park. While the County documents don’t seem to call out actual usage analysis, we can look back when County did do a more through study. Using that study and from on the ground observations, we have this perspective:
Here is a comparison table of various park amenities:
|Picnic Capacity||1,047||664*||Picnic areas are fully utilized – the most popular park amenity. The new plan reduces the picnic capacity by 383 (36.6% reduction).|
|Volleyball||4||2||Volleyball is the most popular sport at the park, and has been for 40 years, yet one half of the courts are being removed|
|Tennis||4||2||Tennis is also one of the top 3 sports at the park – yet this too is being cut in half|
|Softball||1||—||While the softball field is unmaintained, it is also one of the top 3 sports at the park. Twice as many visitors used the softball field over the baseball field when both were open and in good shape.|
|Woodland||72 Trees cut||Many of these trees are being cut from the very heart of the historic woodland, leaving it just a shell of what it was. (See before-after comparisons below).|
Below are two interactive photos. To view the current trees in one of the areas County plans to destroy trees and a projection of County’s planned ‘solution’. Please drag the center control in the image to the left or right.
There is much more to measuring the impact of destroying our woodland trees. The wildlife in the park uses these trees for sources of food, for roosting, and for nesting. These trees significantly cool the areas around them and that benefits the other trees in the woodland with lower temperatures and better water retention in the environment. Under the ground, these trees are interconnected as a woodland community, with all of the other root structures and composition of the shared woodland.
If the plan cutting of the beautiful mature trees is allowed, it will have a very high impact on the surrounding trees and they will be under much higher stress levels. All of the trees in the SF Bay area are already under stress due to climate change and water shortages.
This video is looking towards the heart of the heritage woodland area where County plans to remove a large percentage of the trees.
Comparison of 2nd Soccer Field’s Impact
Trees in the heart of the woodland will be cleared to make room for an artificial turf soccer field. While not shown in the video, the field will have 20′ to 30′ netting around it.
Interactive Flood Park Map
In the following map, you can click various items in the list to the right of the map in order to explore changes proposed for Flood Park. As a point of reference, the current park walking paths are shown in yellow.