The 97.5-acre former Silva property is located four miles south east of the Town of La Honda
along Alpine Road in unincorporated San Mateo County. The property is surrounded by
Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve to the north and west, and Skyline Ridge Open Space Preserve to the south and east. The property is also accessible from Alpine Road via Skyline
Boulevard (State Highway 35) with close to a mile of frontage along Alpine Road.
In partnership with Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST), the District is currently constructing a new parking lot and is planning two new connector trails in the Mindego Area of Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve. POST has recently finished construction of a commemorative site adjacent to the staging area to honor the conservation achievements of its former president Audrey C. Rust. These new public-access facilities collectively form the Mindego Gateway Project, and are scheduled to be open this winter.
November 2013 – The District is finalizing the construction of the Mindego Gateway Parking Lot, short connection trail to Mindego Hill Trail, and the Audrey C. Rust Commemorative Site was completed this fall. The site provides parking for 20 cars (including two ADA accessible spots), a restroom, bike rack, trail connection, and access to the Commemorative Site. The District plans to open this area to the public this winter – stay tuned for details!
July 2012 - The District Legislative, Funding, and Public Affairs Committee (LFPAC) reviewed and accepted the final commemorative site design, which aligns with the Board-approved design guidelines.
June 2012 - The District Board
Adopted the IS/MND in accordance with CEQA.
Approved an amendment to the Use and Management (U&M) Plan for Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve to construct a commemorative site, a 20-stall paved parking lot, a multi-use trail
connecting the staging area to the Ancient Oaks Trail, a hiking and equestrian trail to the
peak of Mindego Hill, and close a section of the existing Mindego Ridge Trail to bicycles.
Authorized the General Manager to approve amendments to the Williamson Act Contracts
pertaining to the Project parcels, as well as future Williamson Act contract amendments, as
possible and needed, to allow open space uses and supporting facilities that are compatible
with agricultural operations (See Board Report R-12-37).
February 2012 - The District completed an Initial Study/Mitigated Negative Declaration (IS/MND) in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act. The public comment period ended March 19, 2012.
January 2012 - The District Board of Directors tentatively approved the Project, including proposed trail use recommendations, for the purposes of environmental review pursuant to the CEQA (See Board Report R-12-13).
November 10, 2011 -
Staff presented the proposed trail use recommendations for the Mindego Gateway Project and sought public and Committee input on these recommendations. Staff recommendations included:
Designating the proposed Mindego Hill Trail and adjacent segment of
Mindego Ridge Trail as hiking and equestrian-only trails. The Mindego Hill Trail would be
built primarily using hand tools and will average a width of two feet.
Designating the proposed Ancient Oaks Connector Trail as a multi-use trail.
October 21, 2011 - District staff sought recommendations from the Use and
Management Committee to move forward with design of the project elements: Mindego Gateway Parking Lot and Staging Area and two new trails-- the "Mindego Hill Trail" and the "Ancient Oaks Connector Trail."
August 2011 - The District Board of Directors approved the Mindego Gateway Project as a
new Key Project, created a series of design guidelines for the Audrey Rust Commemorative Site (to
be constructed by POST), and authorized contracts with a team of consultants including landscape
architects, CEQA specialists, and biologists to plan and design the staging area and trail connections
(See Board Reports R-11-82, R-11-86, and R-11-87).
June 28, 2011 - The District took title to the property and it
was added as part of Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve. The former Silva property,
located just over one mile east of Mindego Hill, contains a graded area with frontage onto Alpine Road that provides an ideal staging area location for the larger proposed Mindego Gateway
May 11, 2011 - The Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District (District) Board of Directors approved the purchase of the 97.5-acre former Silva Property from POST (See Board Report R-11-14).
The following are the next steps needed to proceed with the project:
Complete working drawings for the Ancient Oaks Connector Trail alignment.