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Otay Connections

The Wildlife Conservation Board (WCB) has just awarded $409,000 to the Resource Conservation District of Greater San Diego County to lead a project that will create plans to restore a 15-acre site within the Otay Valley Regional Park (OVRP). City of San Diego is the lead landowner, alongside the County of San Diego and City of Chula Vista. The site, currently a eucalyptus grove, is targeted as a priority for restoration in the OVRP Concept Plan. This planning project is exploring how the site can best conserve native wildlife and biodiversity while engaging the community, creating greater habitat connectivity within the park, and improving water quality.

Invasive eucalyptus grove in Otay River Valley
Invasive eucalyptus grove in Otay River Valley

This collaborative project draws on the expertise of a team of partners including the San Diego Green Infrastructure Consortium, the Institute for Public Strategies’ Partnerships for Success Program, San Diego Regional Policy and Innovation Center, Mongol Tribe, and Lumbercycle. The agencies that form the Joint Exercise of Powers Authority responsible for management of the OVRP – San Diego County and the Cities of San Diego and Chula Vista – will also be involved.

The project team recognizes the interconnectedness of natural and social systems and will strive to develop a holistic set of shovel-ready plans that, once implemented, will not only improve the wildlife habitat within the project site but also improve connectivity to adjacent park property, surrounding neighborhoods, and the residents within them. The community will be engaged through outreach, education and training, and opportunities to provide input into the planning process.

In addition to the OVRP Concept Plan, this project aligns with other initiatives such as the State of CA Pathways to 30 x 30 strategy by advancing biodiversity conservation on public lands, accelerating locally-led conservation, expanding environmental restoration and stewardship, and promoting nature-based solutions in the fight against climate change.


Quarterly Update: June 2024

This spring, project partners advanced the project by:

  • Visiting the site to explore options for designing the habitat and recreational area
  • Consultant RECON Environmental conducted biological and cultural monitoring to inform design and permitting
  • Analyzed available data and drafted two conceptual plans as conversation tools for public outreach
  • Presented to public representatives, such as the OVRP Citizens' Advisory Committee and Otay Mesa-Nestor Community Planning Group

Get involved! Public outreach events continue throughout the next few months. Join us on the trail to survey local residents, or participate in a public workshop at the end of the summer.


Project Contact

Ann Baldridge, Executive Director

(619) 562-0096



OtayConnections_Photos_2024-March.jpgOtayConnections_Map_2024-March.jpgFlier - OVRP Connections.pdf


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