Trust for Public Land Donates Property to the City of Pittsburg (CA)

SAN FRANCISCO-The Trust for Public Land (TPL), a San Francisco-based national nonprofit land conservation organization, announced today its donation of nearly 4 acres of land to the city of Pittsburg. Adjacent to Buchanan Park, the new addition will provide space for the city’s proposed environmental learning center for elementary school children, access to Kirker Creek, and habitat for the threatened California red-legged frog. The property is home to an historic valley oak tree estimated to be 250 years old, and is the site of naturally occurring Northern California black walnut trees, a rare occurrence in the state.

“We are pleased to be recipients of the property which has the finest natural creek in the city of Pittsburg. We look forward to preserving the creek, as well as providing educational opportunities for the children of Pittsburg,” says Joel Summerhill, Director of the Parks and Recreation Department for the city of Pittsburg.

The acquisition of the parkland was made possible by a grant resulting from a dispute between USS-Posco and the Contra Costa Building Trades Council and the Northern California/Nevada Pipes Trade Council over the $400 million modernization of USS-Posco’s Pittsburg steel plant. As part of the 1991 settlement agreement, USS-Posco donated $250,000 to TPL-which was not party to the dispute-over a five year period for the acquisition and enhancement of ecologically significant wetlands in the northern portion of the San Francisco Bay. TPL used $140,000 of Posco grant money and the California Regional Water Quality Control Board donated $40,000 from its Posco fund to acquire the property, which has a fair market value of $200,000.

“The city appreciates the efforts of TPL, the Regional Water Quality Control Board, and Posco,” adds Mr. Summerhill.

The Trust for Public Land works nationwide to secure land for parks and open space, transferring property to local, state, or federal agencies and private land stewards for permanent public protection. Since 1972, the Trust has protected more than 1.2 million acres of scenic, cultural, recreational, and environmentally sensitive lands across the country. Projects in the Bay Area include the preservation of 233 acres at Millerton Point through the Tomales Bay Preservation Program, the 96-acre Marin Crest Property, soon to be an addition to the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, and the revitalization of Lincoln Square Park and Nicol Park in Oakland.