Funding Awarded to CCC for Trail Construction in McKay Community Forest

This is a press release from the County of Humboldt:

On June 28, 2018, the California Transportation Commission approved a funding award of $660,000 to the California Conservation Corps to support two years of trail construction within the McKay Community Forest, located southeast of Eureka. Funding was provided through the Active Transportation Program, which is intended to increase use of active modes of transportation such as biking and walking.

The California Conservation Corps (CCC) is a work development program for men and women between the ages of 18 to 25, offering work in environmental conservation, fire protection, trail maintenance and construction, and emergency response to natural disasters. The CCC’s Fortuna Center houses nearly 100 residential Corpsmembers who work on projects throughout Humboldt and Del Norte counties. The CCC assisted in the construction of the Hammond Trail in McKinleyville, the City of Arcata’s Humboldt Bay Trail North, and the Eureka Waterfront Trail.

One thousand acres of forestland were acquired by Humboldt County in 2014 with state and federal funds to create the McKay Community Forest. The community forest will be managed for multiple uses including public access and recreation, sustainable timber harvest, and watershed and resource conservation. Development and management of the community forest will be funded primarily by timber harvest revenue, grants, and donations with support from the Volunteer Trail Stewards program of the Humboldt Trails Council. Grant applications are pending to fund the second phase of acquisition for 197 acres near Ridgewood Heights.

Humboldt County Public Works expects to release the McKay Community Forest 2018 Trail Plan in August for public review. The Trail Plan will provide the blueprint for development of access points and approximately 25 miles of trails to enable recreational and educational use throughout the community forest. Trails will be designed and built as much as possible to provide accessibility for people with physical disabilities. Trail construction work with the CCC is expected to start in September.

Construction of parking and trailhead facilities along Northridge Road in Cutten was initiated in May and is nearly complete. This project included a new left-turn pocket from Walnut Drive onto Northridge Road to enhance safety for turning movements. Funding for the Northridge public access project was provided by a state Housing-Related Parks Program grant, Eureka Community Planning Area Parkland Dedication fees, and Measure Z. This project was accelerated to ensure work was completed before the grant deadline.

For more information, contact:

Hank Seemann, Deputy Director – Humboldt County Public Works

707-445-7741, hseemann@co.humboldt.ca.us

Mark Allee, Conservation Supervisors – California Conservation Corps

707-725-5106, mark.allee@ccc.ca.gov

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Pictures and downloads below:

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McKay Community Forest Map showing drawing of future parking lot off Walnut Drive with equestrian pa

McKay Community Forest Map showing drawing of future parking lot off Walnut Drive and future trails

McKay Community Forest Map showing all future trails, including a mountain biking trail, as well as

Photo of parking lot off Walnut Drive and Northridge. A cut Redwood tree stump is in the middle of t

McKay Community Forest web page

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11 comments

  • So…is this going to be like the Arcata community forest? Many moons ago, I was a student at HSU, and on a forestry class session in the Arcata forest, we were told, in no uncertain terms, to be careful where we stepped because of the homeless spots out there. There was certainly evidence of that, along with the obvious remains of certain bodily functions. I just hope the McKay forest doesn’t end up the same way. Not holding out much hope, though.

    • It’s already like that, to some extent. The lack of current inroads to the forest means that a lot of transients are back there. Not sure it will get better, or worse, with development of trails.

  • Creating new infrastructure when they can’t afford to fix what they already have. Create more places to police when they can not police what they have. And all for the sake of hiking trails in an area chock full of parks already.

  • Why not just say Humboldt County hired the CCC to cut trails with money it lobbied for, and got, from the state?

  • This is the 2nd article I have read recently on RHBB about the McKay Forest. In neither have I noticed a reference to the origins of the name.
    I am hoping it was named for the late Tim McKay, who led the Humboldt community for so long as an advocate of our local environment. Tim served a long time as the Chair of the North Coast Environmental Center. He also started and was the long time Host of KHSU’s Eco News Report show.
    ….I just did a little on line research and could not verify the name origin. Found that it was known as the McKay Tract before and owned by Green Diamond logging co. That does not lend itself to my theory.
    You have info Kym?
    No matter what. When I see that the McKay Forest name, I will reflect back on and honor Tim, knowing this would have been a fitting tribute to him and his selfless work for our community!

  • Note that this grant is from the California Transportation Commission. These funds are extorted by the leftist environmental community to buy-off their opposition to highway projects (Remember the cost of the Willits Bypass? Keep an eye on the costs of the Last Chance Grade improvements…and other projects.). The costs of these projects are enormous and a huge part of it is stimulated by environmental issues.

    So we’ll have new facilities for the homeless, with maintenance funded for 2-years. After that it will have to be maintained by already overburdened county resources. When the county wants to raise property taxes in three years, this will be one of the reasons for it.

    • The State Government giveth and the State Government taketh away. But it never gives as much as it takes as it must support itself in the process.

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