By: Dale Sanders, Phd

Over 20 years ago I helped develop a plan that worked well for developing an understanding of the Claremont Canyon watershed in Berkeley.

The canyon is primarily the property of the East Bay Regional Park District, East Bay Municipal Utility District, and the University of California, Berkeley. The Campus uses the canyon for various purposes, including academic research, and physical facilities, including roads and trails.

Claremont CanyonAs a Senior Planner in the Campus Planning Office I was the primary contact for individuals, professors and graduate students and campus units proposing uses and activities in the canyon and the Campus Hill Area.  I had been hired to manage the EIR for the Long Range Development Plan (LRDP).  We were concerned about how the Hill Area (1,300 acres or so) should be analysed and treated for the long term (2005 target).  The LRDP is up for revision for 2020, right now.  The question then, as it is now, what to do about this area of multiple and often, conflicting uses?
After consulting faculty, land managers, and local experts, the answer to that question was not clear or easily determined.  At the same time I had been given the opportunity to “teach” several environmental courses in Letters and Sciences and the College of Natural Resources (CNR).  I was on part-time loan from my campus planning duties.  My goal was to give students exposure and experience in “real world” field analysis and reporting.

I was asked by the CNR to teach Conservation Resource Studies 131 for 1990 and 1991; one dozen upper division and graduate students of various backgrounds were enrolled in 1991.  After discussions with CNR faculty and students it was determined we could treat students like a “consulting team”; we would rely on “best available information” and appropriate research to develop a consensus on what the University might do with its portion of Claremont Canyon.  The goal was to present recommendations and options for the “clients”: College of Natural Resources, Campus Planning Office and the University Administration.

The students produced the attached document for a grade.  All students participated and received an “A” grade.  Read it and see if you agree.  Pass it on if you wish since it has been published.

This is a good model that could be used for a watershed analysis and plan for the Calaveras Watershed… maybe University of the Pacific would be interested?

Click here to download a copy of the Claremont Canyon Report