Saving one of California’s greatest wildflower habitats
When naturalist John Muir crossed California, he passed through vast fields of wildflowers noting that his feet “would press a hundred flowers at every step.” Places like this still exist, and CNPS is working to protect one of California’s last.
Centennial is a proposed new city of 55,000 people in the far northwestern corner of the county. The project is located on Tejon Ranch, which sits at the confluence of five eco-regions. Here, where coastal habitats meet the Mojave Desert and the Tehachapi Mountains, lies one of California’s most biodiverse landscapes. Tejon Ranch is home to 911 native plant taxa. That’s 14 percent of California’s native flora of California occurring on just 0.25 percent of the state’s acreage!
On December 11, 2018, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors indicated their intent to approve Centennial in a 4-1 vote. For more information on this decision please see this press release.
CNPS is currently working with our partner organizations to determine the next steps in our opposition to Centennial. Stay tuned on social media for the latest updates on this project
Bad for the environment, bad for people
CNPS, the Center for Biological Diversity, and thousands of other Californians are working hard to stop the project, which planning experts and scientists are calling a dangerous boondoggle.
- The proposed Centennial Specific Plan is sited on a hot, windy grassland prone to wildfire. CAL FIRE has designated the location a high fire hazard severity zone.
- Neighborhoods would be built on top of two major fault lines, including the San Andreas.
- Public transit will not accompany the project, leaving future residents with long commutes.
- Experts estimate an additional 75,000 car trips per day.
- Californians will have to pay a $800 million price tag to widen Hwy 138, which will be needed to accommodate traffic associated with the project.
- Centennial will destroy more than 5,000 acres of high quality habitat for native grasses and wildflowers.
The Los Angeles County Planning Commission recently OK’d the 19,000-home Centennial project on Tejon Ranch. Developing in the wildland urban interface, where homes and offices abut foothills, forests or other open land, increases both the risk of starting fires and the number of people and structures in harm’s way when there is a fire. – LA Times Editorial Board
CNPS & Partner Comment Letters
Lawsuit Challenges City-sized Sprawl Development in L.A. County
Group Sign-On | CNPS, Center for Biological Diversity, Great Old Broads for Wilderness, Tri-County Watchdogs, Wild Heritage Planners, American Indian Movement, Defenders of Wildlife, Los Angeles Audubon Society, Investing in Place, SoCal 350 Climate Action, Center on Race Poverty & the Environment, Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice, and Los Angeles Walks
DEIR | Center for Biological Diversity (CBD), CNPS, and Center for Food Safety
Cap-and-Trade | CNPS and partners
FEIR (June 2018) | CBD and CNPS
FEIR (Dec 2018) | CBD, CNPS, and Center for Food Safety
Community Group Comments
Additional Expert Comment
The Signal (Jan 18, 2019) | Centennial Should Be Reconsidered
LA Times (Jan 2, 2019) | Environmentalists made a troubling deal with Tejon Ranch
LA Times (Dec 10, 2018) | A botanist critcized Tejon Ranch. So he got kicked out — along with 10,000 of his friends
LA Times (Dec 8, 2018) | Just Say No to More Southern California Sprawl – LA Times Editorial Board
LA Times (Dec 4, 2018) | LA County considering building a new city where fire hazard is high. Is Tejon worth the risk?)
LA Times (Aug 29, 2018) | L.A. county planners recommend approval of Tejon Ranch development
LA Times (Aug 26, 2018)| Building a vast new city on L.A.’s northern edges: A solution for the region’s housing crunch?
LA Times (June 6, 2018) | L.A. County inches toward a final decision on Tejon Ranch development
LA Times Editorial Board | Rebuild Paradise? California has to reconsider putting homes in the path of more dangerous fires
Jack Eidt | Is the Centennial project on Tejon Ranch another Paradise waiting to happen?
J.P. Rose | Centennial threatens untouched corner of L.A. County
J.P. Rose | L.A. Times readers react
Nick Jensen | Day in the life on an ill-advised development site
J.P. Rose | L.A. County should reject new city that will generate unprecedented traffic
Latest news and stories
Reflections on the recent Tejon Ranch and Guenoc Valley decisions.
Reflections on the L.A. County Centennial DecisionBy voting in favor of the Centennial development, LA County supervisors put the interests of Tejon Ranch Company ahead of the local community.
An Important Next Step to Stop CentennialCNPS and partner the Center for Biological Diversity (the Center) have taken the next step in halting the ill-advised Tejon Ranch proposal with an important comment letter to the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.