Bear Creek Stables

Overview | Repairs | Funding | Timeline | E-mail

Project Overview

The Bear Creek Stables site was first developed in 1916 as part of Dr. Harry L. Tevis’s Alma Stock Farm. Following the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District’s acquisition of the site in 1999, the stables have continued under lease with a tenant.

Midpen is keeping these century-old horse stables, located within our Bear Creek Redwoods Preserve, operational by completing maintenance and repairs allowing existing uses and public programs to continue. Our Bear Creek Stables site plan, approved in 2017, guides us in managing the stables to meet the following goals:

  • Emphasize protection of the site’s natural resources
  • Maximize public benefit
  • Develop a viable, financially feasible long-term plan

Midpen is currently proceeding with maintenance and repairs, however implementation of the entire site plan is currently on hold due to rising costs. 

Public Meetings

The next public meeting on this topic is tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, December 11, 2019 at 7 p.m. in our administrative office at 330 Distel Circle, Los Altos. Midpen’s board of directors will receive an update on maintenance and repair plans for Bear Creek Stables. The meeting agenda and report will be posted here the Friday prior to the meeting. 

MAINTENANCE AND REPAIRS

Planning and permitting are currently underway for maintenance and repair projects. These include:

  • Repairing existing structures including barn and arena
  • Replacing the caretaker’s cottage with a portable (less than 500 square feet)
  • Replacing the public restroom, septic and leach field
  • Updating ADA parking, water system and road

Funding

Midpen's board of directors has committed $4,277,300 to implement the Bear Creek Stables site plan. Due to rising cost estimates, a funding gap of approximately $1 million exists to complete maintenance and repairs. A funding gap of approximately $5 million currently exists to implement the entire Bear Creek Stables site plan.

At their October 9, 2019 public meeting, Midpen's board voted to continue with maintenance and repairs within the approved budget, but not to pursue public-private fundraising to raise the additional resources that would be neccesary to implement the entire 2017 Bear Creek Stables site plan. This decision was made due to rising costs and a high level of uncertainty for fundraising success. However, opportunities remain for outside groups to fundraise for operational, programming and small-scale improvements in partnership with the Bear Creek Stables' operator.

Project Timeline

2015-2016

Public and environmental review process to create the Bear Creek Stables site plan

January 25, 2017

Public meeting: Bear Creek Stables site plan approved by Midpen’s board as part of the Bear Creek Redwoods Preserve Plan, along with a certified Environmental Impact Report.

2017

Preliminary planning reveals site constraints and challenges associated with implementing the Bear Creek Stables site plan. New cost estimates increase funding gap.

2018-2019

Coordination with Santa Clara County to clarify maintenance and repairs allowed under the stable’s existing legal nonconforming use.

April 25, 2019

Public meeting: Midpen’s board approves implementing maintenance and repairs within the approved project budget, while pursuing implementation of the entire Bear Creek Stables site plan in the long-term. Agenda and report.

Summer 2019

Planning and permitting for maintenance and repair projects begins.

October 9, 2019

Public meeting: Midpen’s board votes not to pursue public-private fundraising to raise the resources that would be needed to implement the entire 2017 Bear Creek Stables site plan. Agenda and report. 

Winter 2019

Public meeting: Midpen’s board will receive an update on maintenance and repair plans.

Summer 2020

Maintenance and repair construction plans 50% complete.

Summer 2021

Maintenance and repair construction anticipated to begin.

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