Grant Park, located above Downtown Ventura will remain closed from the impact of the Thomas Fire and will not reopen to the public until the area is safe. The closure is important to protect public safety and to permit the park to recover.
The Thomas Fire caused extensive damage by destroying plant material and plant roots that stabilize slopes throughout the park. Vegetation has been extremely slow to grow back, mostly due to the lack of winter rains. Until vegetation is reestablished, there is a reduction in soil strength and the stability of the slopes is hazardous to hikers and bikers. The City thanks the public for its patience while nature restores and rehabilitates itself.
“Public safety is of utmost importance,” said Nancy O’Connor, Parks, Recreation & Community Partnerships Director.
Signs have been installed to notify park goers that they should stay out of the closed areas. Unlawful entry into the closed areas could cause potential for accidental injuries. Individuals violating the closure put themselves in danger and may be subject to criminal prosecution including fines.
The good news is that the Ventura Botanical Gardens (VBG) re-opened its garden and trails on November 3, however all other areas of the park remain closed. See article in this issue.
Guests to the garden should enter and exit through the new welcome center above City Hall and must stay on the trails. Parking is available.
VBG is a public/private partnership with the City of Ventura, 107 of the 109 acres of parkland are leased by the nonprofit. For VBG hours visit www.venturabotanicalgardens.com.
Serra Cross Park is open by reservation only at www.serracrosspark.com.