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Habitat Preservation

Regional Open Space Strategy

The main objective of regional open space planning is to build consensus and resolve conflicts between transportation and other public facilities' open space. SANDAG will complete a regional open space inventory. SANDAG has defined regionally significant open space to include: region-defining open space, natural resource areas, region-serving open space, and rural lands.

The region has focused its attention and resources on natural resource areas. These are areas that should be preserved in their natural state because of their environmental quality or sensitivity and overall value to the region. These areas include steep slopes, floodplains, wetlands, and habitat of native plants and animals. All jurisdictions in the region have policies for preserving these natural resources in a comprehensive and coordinated manner. The goal is to assure that adequate quantities of diverse habitat types are maintained, and that the plants and animals found in these habitats are less likely to become endangered. (See Habitat Preservation for a discussion of these programs)

Region-defining open space are major undeveloped areas along the border of San Diego County that define and separate it from other regions. The first impression upon entering the San Diego Region should be the feeling of openness and a break in continuous urbanization.

Region-serving open space are areas lightly developed with activities or facilities that serve the region as unique or outstanding recreational, safety or managed production (agriculture, mineral extraction). These areas should be retained as open space and, in some cases, increased to serve the region’s expanding needs. Additionally, corridors of open space within and between communities should be retained in order to provide identity and a sense of community, and to link significant open space areas.

Rural lands are areas outside the identified urban area that should be planned to remain in a low intensity, rural land use pattern. These areas provide a contrast to complete urbanization and result in the visual appearance and feeling of more openness in the region.