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City ponders park purchase

Envisioning a trail that loops from Old Downieville Highway to Indian Flat Road, City Manager Mark Miller urged the City Council Monday evening to consider accepting a potential donation of 40 acres northwest of Nevada City.

The acreage is designated as open space in a proposed 121-acre development called Champion Estates, Nevada County Associate Planner Uma Hinman said.

Erickson Realty, which owns the 121-acre property west of Hirschman’s Pond, would like to create 30 lots ranging from 1.5 to five acres, Hinman said.



Currently, the donation of 40 acres of open space to a nonprofit or a governmental agency is a required condition to compensate for environmental damage caused by the development.

The property is in Nevada City’s proposed annexation area and could link with the newly acquired Hirschman’s Pond property, Miller said.




“These opportunities don’t come along all the time,” said Councilwoman Sally Harris. “I think we should definitely pursue this.”

Councilman Steve Cottrell also expressed interest but said he was concerned about potential maintenance costs.

Miller said money to maintain an unimproved trail through the property could come from state recreation money known as Quimby funds.

“I think we (should) look at this for future generations,” Miller said.

At the council’s request, Miller said city staffers would return at the next meeting with more information on the property.

Champion Estates is on hold while the developer researches ways to improve Indian Flat Road, Hinman said.


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