Felton Covered Bridge ParkLetters 

Letter: Support for a Felton Pump Track

Dear SLV Post,

As a resident of Felton, I want to express my support for and provide a positive view of building a pump track in the covered bridge park. This proposal presents a unique opportunity to provide the community with a much needed convenient, safe, and legal space to practice a variety of sports. The beauty of an asphalt pump track is that it appeals to a range of users of all skill levels on anything with wheels. Anyone who has used one can attest whether you’re 5 or 35, they are just plain fun. I encourage anyone who has yet to see one to go, and it will help clarify the scope of this low-impact project and its benefits to the community.

To that end, this project is a series of low earthwork berms with a ribbon of asphalt on top that are landscaped to blend into the environment and surrounded by a natural wooden split rail fence. This project is absolutely in line with the development plan for the Felton covered bridge park by respecting its historical value while providing an area for modern active use that doesn’t unduly burden other users.

The Valley Womens Club has made this community infrastructure a focal point to oppose despite both the original proposal and clearly announced public hearings addressing their concerns regarding sanitation, flooding, parking, and access. When facing this organized opposition, speaking up and making your voice heard is more important than ever to represent the community accurately.


Daniel Core

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2 Thoughts to “Letter: Support for a Felton Pump Track”

  1. I agree, anything to gets kids off there screens and exercising in the sun and fresh air is a plus. One the biggest problems in our rial little paradise is enough for kids to do. I’m all for it!!

  2. Kylan

    I am a 30 year resident in San Lorenzo Valley. I raised my children here and have been active member of this community. I am a Certified Arborist who has worked in the Santa Cruz Mountains as a Hazard tree consultant for public utilities. I also worked for the SLV schools, managing their Performing Arts Center and mentoring students in technical theater.

    I am writing about the proposed pump track in Felton. I am not opposed to pump tracks. Due to many concerns, I do not feel this is an appropriate place for a pump track. As follows:

    Environmental. This specific area is in the flood plain and is notorious for flooding during storms. Covering open soil with asphalt will increase this potential, while also limiting ground water restoration. Asphalt continually leaches oils and chemicals that will be shed into 2 waterways that are protected.
    Current usage already often exceeds the park capacity. According to the words of the Parks department, there will no added facilities like bathrooms or parking. Adding a group specific feature will greatly limit local enjoyment of this park. People who do not ride bikes will be excluded from this feature, which will command 1/3 of the usable park.
    Appearances. This park is a gateway to the Redwoods and the preservation of its current look is in keeping with our rural roots. This is the first “look” most people from over the hill get as they come into the valley via Mt. Hermon. Having a pump track be the face of this community does not feel right.
    Proponents of the track would like to suggest there are not enough outdoor activities for youth here. I raised my family here. We are blessed with some of the most beautiful, accessible and nearby places to enjoy the natural world. People travel HERE to visit our backyard. Pump tracks seem to be more of an inner city need.
    There are plenty of opportunities to build a pump track at other locations. The SLV schools owns a lot of unused property and in particular, an entire school in Boulder Creek that is not in use. It already has infrastructure and asphalt in place.
    Lastly, I am quite concerned at the presence and apparent control over this proposal by an outside group whose ability to fund raise is directly tied to building and maintaining these tracks. At best they should be one voice at a meeting of locals, not an organizer for the Parks department. The have created local hostility through their hyperbole and a vast network of people outside our area they have recruited. It appears they are not interested in building this elsewhere as it does not fit their business model of co-opting a public space and funds. I have no idea what they actually do but I do know they spend a good deal of time and energy on building and maintaining pump tracks, which inherently goes against their stated purpose. Their involvement in the planning of this track has resulted in limiting local involvement, circumnavigated local concerns and plainly ignores environmental, health and safety regulations.

    I would urge you to take a close look at this issue and be aware that this proposal serves the wants of the few at the expense of history, beauty and environmental stewardship.

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