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Carr Ranch

Castro Valley Forum | March 22, 2017

EBMUD Buys Ranch Bordering Local Reservoir

The East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) announced last week that it has purchased a key piece of land in the East Bay hills which will help keep a source of Castro Valley’s drinking water clean for decades to come.

The Upper San Leandro Reser- voir made front-page news earlier this year when – nearing capacity from January’s storms – it was opened to allow runoff in order to avoid damage to the Lake Chabot Dam. That sent San Leandro Creek surging over its banks and ooding Redwood Canyon Golf Course in Castro Valley. Most Castro Valley residents will soon be seeing increases in their utility bills now that PG&E has raised its rates and also adjust- ed its tiered pricing model. The district partnered with the non-pro t John Muir Land Trust to purchase the 604-acre Carr Ranch – just outside of Moraga – for $7 million, $4.5 million of which came from EMBUD. + More

Lamorinda Weekly | March 22, 2017

EBMUD Celebrates Carr Ranch watershed acquisition

With a backdrop of rolling green hills, local dignitaries, EBMUD officials and representatives of the John Muir Land Trust officially celebrated the preservation of Carr Ranch, the large expanse of land just beyond Rancho Laguna Park.

The 604 acres owned by the Carr Ranch for 103 years is not just going to be used for pristine hikes, but as a valuable watershed for Lamorinda residents. "Delivering high quality drinking water to our customers relies on EBMUD's commitment carefully managing our watershed lands," said Richard Sykes, director of Natural Resources for EBMUD. He said his staff worked for more than eight years to create a first-ever conservation bank on EBMUD land in Pinole, which provided the funding to purchase the Carr Ranch land. He thanked the John Muir Land Trust for the "historic solution" that permanently preserves a total of 1,000 acres of watershed land. + More

East Bay Times | March 20, 2017

Moraga: Spotlight on preserved ranch land

MORAGA — Acres of lush ranchland preserved by a unique partnership between a public agency and a conservation group was on dazzling display recently.

On March 15, representatives from the East Bay Municipal Utility District and John Muir Land Trust — joined by Moraga Mayor Teresa Onoda — toured the 604-acre Carr Ranch property EBMUD recently purchased from the Land Trust to help protect the Upper San Leandro Reservoir, which supplies drinking water to thousands of East Bay residents.

The former cattle ranch is being permanently preserved as watershed land, which will be managed by EBMUD. The John Muir Land Trust will oversee recreational use of the land, including hiking and wildlife viewing. + More

JMLT and EBMUD Celebrate Carr Ranch Partnership | March 15, 2017

MORAGA, CA -- John Muir Land Trust and East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) celebrated the launch of their partnership to preserve Carr Ranch by hosting community leaders, elected officials, supporters and stakeholders for a morning event that ended with hikes to view the property. This unique partnership is protecting vital watershed land that is an important local source of high-quality drinking water for East Bay residents.

JMLT and EBMUD signed a Conservation Agreement in late 2015 to protect the property in perpetuity. Under this agreement, EBMUD’s role is to preserve the watershed on the property, protect wildlife habitat, maintain open spaces and natural scenery, and preserve historical ranching heritage. JMLT will manage permanent public access to Carr Ranch for light recreation such as hiking, wildlife viewing, on-leash dog walking and equestrian activities.

Carr Ranch will open to the public in late 2017.

Read more:

EBMUD Press Release | Finding Solutions: East Bay Municipal Utility District and John Muir Land Trust celebrate permanent preservation of Lamorinda watershed land

John Muir Land Trust Press Release | November 22, 2016

JOHN MUIR LAND TRUST ANNOUNCES CARR RANCH IS SAVED
604 ACRES PROTECTED IN PARTNERSHIP WITH EAST BAY MUNICIPAL UTILITY DISTRICT (EBMUD)

MARTINEZ, CA — John Muir Land Trust ( JMLT) announces Carr Ranch is saved. The 604-acre cattle ranch will be permanently protected in partnership with East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD). Adjacent to the Town of Moraga, the property will be preserved as watershed land, essential wildlife habitat and open space for public enjoyment. An outpouring of donations from individuals, foundations, agencies and corporations reached the $7 million project goal needed to acquire the private property from the Carr family, who have owned the land for over a century. Contributing $4.5 million toward the purchase, East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) will hold title to the property, and JMLT will provide public access and recreation.

John Muir Land Trust and EBMUD have signed a Conservation Agreement to protect the property in perpetuity. Under this agreement EBMUD’s role is to preserve the watershed on the property, protect wildlife habitat, maintain open spaces and natural scenery, and preserve historical ranching heritage. JMLT will manage permanent public access to Carr Ranch for light recreation such as hiking, wildlife viewing, dog walking and equestrian activities.

The undeveloped Carr Ranch property provides habitat for endangered reptiles and amphibians — and for large animals such as deer, American badger, golden eagle, and mountain lion. Its creeks and streams drain into the Upper San Leandro Reservoir, and from there into the homes of tens of thousands of East Bay families. Carr Ranch exemplifies the best of Contra Costa landscapes, an area known for some of the most beautiful scenery in the region. Terrain varies from hillsides and ridge tops to meadows and bottomlands; and the vegetation from coastal live oak and riparian woodlands to coastal scrub and annual grasses.

“We couldn’t have hoped for an outcome that better serves the public’s need for permanent protection and access to this spectacular natural landscape,” said Linus Eukel, Executive Director of John Muir Land Trust. Carr Ranch is an essential addition to the large protected area created by the Las Trampas Regional Wilderness and nearby watershed lands owned by EBMUD that drain into the Upper San Leandro Reservoir. Continued Eukel, “Carr Ranch offers spectacular views and clean drinking water that will benefit East Bay families for generations to come. And of course, permanently preserving critical wildlife habitat means that current residents — including threatened and endangered species — will benefit as well.” + More

East Bay Municipal Utility District | December 2, 2016

A gift for the East Bay: EBMUD and John Muir Land Trust formalize partnership to save Carr Ranch

Unique collaboration permanently protects watershed land

The East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) and John Muir Land Trust (JMLT) announced a partnership today that saves 604-acres of gorgeous Lamorinda land for future generations.

The EBMUD Board of Directors voted unanimously and enthusiastically today to approve $4,469,600 to purchase the Carr Ranch property. The vote formalizes a partnership between EBMUD and JMLT to acquire the 604-acre cattle ranch from the Carr family, which has owned the land for over a century. Adjacent to the Town of Moraga and surrounded on three sides by EBMUD-owned lands within the Upper San Leandro watershed, Carr Ranch will be permanently preserved as watershed land, essential wildlife habitat and open space for public enjoyment. + More

East Bay Times | November 25, 2016

Moraga: EBMUD buys 604 acres to protect tap water quality

MORAGA — Nearly a square mile of scenic grazing land and oak forests in the Moraga hills is being purchased as a pollution buffer to protect a major East Bay drinking water reservoir and provide public hiking areas.

The East Bay Municipal Utility District agreed this week to spend $4.5 million to buy the 604-acre Carr Ranch from the John Muir Land Trust in an unusual partnership deal between the conservation group and public water supplier for 1.4 million people.

The water district will own and maintain the land to manage wildlife and protect against pollution and silt runoff into the Upper San Leandro Reservoir, a major drinking water source for EBMUD customers on the west side of the Oakland-Berkeley hills.

The Martinez-based land trust will manage the land to provide low-key recreation such as hiking, wildlife viewing and enjoying scenic views of San Francisco and Suisun bays. + More

Mercury News | Update April 28, 2016

Readers help land trust raise $100,000

DEAR JOAN: You've generously added your voice to our call for donations to help preserve Carr Ranch, a stunning 604 acres of beautiful natural habitat in the Upper San Leandro Watershed near Moraga. I am so pleased to report that we've reached the goal of $100,000 we asked of your readers a month and a half ago. + More