Popular Peninsula beach gets new management

SAN MATEO COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) -- A difficult to get to stretch of the San Mateo County coast is getting a new life today. A non-profit has brokered a deal to purchase a major piece of land next to Tunitas Creek Beach and is now working with the county to open it up to everyone.

There are few sights more amazing than the waves crashing against Tunitas Creek Beach South of Half Moon Bay.

Marti Tedesco is with the Peninsula Open Space Trust. She said, "This is quintessential Northern California, it doesn't get any better than this."

The Peninsula Open Space Trust, or POST, has helped preserve 75-thousand acres of permanent open space, farms and parkland in San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties since 1977.

"We protect it and then we like to turn it over to state and local organizations that can care for it and make it open to the public or stewards it in perpetuity," said Tedesco.

Today POST announced that they have purchased another 58 acres along Tunitas Creek Beach, 8 miles South of Half Moon Bay.

The cliffside property has been in private hands for more than a century...but that hasn't kept the adjacent beach from becoming very popular.

San Mateo County Supervisor Don Horsley told said, "We started finding that there were rave parties of anywhere up to 4-500 people camping overnight or over the weekend."

Those parties left behind mountains of trash - POST provided these photos. Neighbors have complained about traffic, and inebriated beachgoers disrupting the generally tranquil coast.

The county has been working with the Trust to secure funding for police patrols and the construction of facilities here. The property will be managed by the county.

This is really probably the most magnificent stretch of beach on the entire San Mateo County Coast. We think this going to be really a jewel for the county park system," said Horsley.

Working with POST - the county is hoping to build a parking lot, restrooms, and direct access to the beach.

"Protecting it environmentally is very important, but also protecting it so the environment and the public can live here side by side is really an important priority for POST," said Tedesco.

POST is now beginning a campaign to raise $5-million to fix up the property for the public. They hope to wrap up that work within three years. To find out how you can help...go to https://openspacetrust.org/donate/

(Written and Produced by Ken Miguel)
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