Brockway Campground

September 2016 Update:

On September 7th, Sierra Pacific Industries and Mountainside Partners issued a press release announcing the potential sale of the land (where the Brockway Campground has been proposed) to the U.S. Forest Service for future management by the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit. FOWS and others are very excited to hear this news. However, the sale is not expected to occur until the end of next year; in the meantime, the application for the Campground will remain active (notably the application for the first proposal on this land – 120 luxury homes – has also not been withdrawn) and several contingencies remain (e.g. an agreed-upon sale price). FOWS will continue to monitor activities related to this project area. Further, we encourage everyone to remain diligent and to continue to advocate for the protection of our ridgelines (which remains a concern with the MVWPSP) as well as call for finding real solutions to our traffic problems in advance of approving large projects that will make them worse.

Background:

The Brockway Campground is a proposed 550-unit campground accessed via the “Fibreboard Freeway” on Brockway Summit (SR 267) that will include a general store, cafe/restaurant, swimming pool, family pavilion, and other structures. Last September, the applicant and their consultants presented information to the TRPA Governing Board. Over 200 people attended, with public comments overwhelmingly in opposition to the project’s location on the ridgeline. At this meeting, TRPA indicated that a full Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) would be required (in the project application, the developer requested a less comprehensive environmental review).

View Brockway Campground application documents:

1. Application
2. Attachments for application
3. Environmental Checklist/Findings

view from lake with marker MVW

View of NLT Ridgeline proposed for development

The proposals for this land have been a moving target:

  • In 2014, a new gated community with 112 luxury homes was proposed via a new Area Plan (see below).
  • When the public (including Realtor groups, Tahoe residents and groups, and Truckee residents) expressed concern, the idea for a new campground emerged.
  • Meanwhile, in early 2015 the developer quietly attempted a boundary line amendment to have land on the ridge declared outside of the Lake Tahoe Basin, and thus not subject to TRPA regulations. FOWS strongly opposed this amendment, and it was dropped in the summer of 2015.
  • In late July 2015, the developer submitted an application for the precedent-setting, 550-unit “Brockway Campground.” As of January 2016, the environmental review process was placed “on hold” while the developers, agencies, and consultants respond to comments on the draft EIR for the MVWPSP (below), which is proposed by the same applicant.

Whether the campground is a serious proposal, or a means to an end (i.e. a way to install utilities for future desired development in a currently undeveloped forest), like many others FOWS is concerned with any substantial development on Tahoe’s famous ridgelines. The scenic impacts from Lake Tahoe and surrounding mountains should be enough to warrant ridgeline protection; add in the fire danger, limited roadway system, traffic, water demand, and other impacts, and protecting our ridgelines should be an easy decision, but requests to do so have not been addressed.

Martis Valley West Parcel Area Plan:

The proposed Martis Valley West Parcel Area Plan (which relies on the adoption of an “Area Plan” under TRPA’s new Regional Plan Update) aims to build 112 luxury homes as part of a gated community on a forested, undeveloped ridgeline in North Lake Tahoe. This is the same land on which the Brockway Campground is currently proposed. As discussed more below, the Area Plan was ‘suspended’ by the applicant, a subsequent boundary line amendment request was dropped early last summer, and and application for the Brockway Campground submitted to TRPA in July 2015. Not only will there be detrimental impacts to Tahoe’s forested environment, and the scenic quality of the entire North Shore, but such a project would also set a precedent that could allow more ridgeline developments around Tahoe in the future.

Background regarding proposed development on parcel:

June 2015:

In order to raise funds to help support efforts to protect Tahoe’s ridgeline from development, the North Tahoe Preservation Alliance organized the June 20, 2015 “Rock the Ridge” benefit concert at the North Tahoe Regional Park. Over 200 concerned community members attended. FOWS, volunteers with savetahoeforests.com, and the Tahoe Area Sierra Club hosted booths, providing information and answering questions about the MVW ridgeline project and other developments in the region. In general, no one in attendance supported the new development on Tahoe’s ridgeline. Those unaware of the project prior to the fundraising event were surprised and disturbed to hear that such development was even contemplated.

January-March 2015:

In January 2015, the project applicant requested the Tahoe portion of the project be separated from the MVWPSP (Truckee-side) development. The Area Plan application for the Tahoe portion was ‘suspended,’ and the environmental review process for the “Truckee-side” (MVWPSP) project moved forward. In February 2015, the applicant submitted a request to TRPA for a boundary line amendment, which if approved, would have allowed more development on the ridgeline (viewable from the Tahoe Basin) as more land would have been regulated by Placer County’s less protective rules instead of the TRPA.

Read FOWS Preliminary Scoping Comments by Lozeau Drury, LLP. (3/27/2015)
Read FOWS Additional Scoping Comments (3/28/2015)

Concerned North Shore and Truckee citizens have been circulating two petitions:

1. Remove Tahoe Basin portion of Martis Valley West project (view/sign petition)
2. Establish enforceable ridgeline protections in the Lake Tahoe area (view/sign petition)

We encourage you to sign both of these petitions to show your support for these requests. FOWS also recently submitted a request to TRPA to include ridgeline protections in its Code.

Background regarding proposed “Area Plan” land use:

As noted in FOWS information on the RPU, last minute changes were made by the agencies to set the stage for more areas to be rezoned to a “Resort Recreation District,” which allows large resort hotels and other structures to be built on currently natural, undeveloped land. So far, this new zoning has been approved for lands owned by large resort corporations (two new districts were already created by TRPA’s RPU for Edgewood and Vail corporations on South Shore). In 2014, developers proposed changing the land on Tahoe’s ridgeline – which is primarily zoned for Conservation uses – to the Resort Recreation District zoning (via the proposed Martis Valley West Parcel Area Plan).

See maps showing proximity to Lake Tahoe.

Status:
Draft “Martis Valley West Parcel” Area Plan released;
Public comments due 8/1/14;   Read FOWS 8/1/2014 comments

Notice of Preparation (NOP) issued 3/28/14;
Public comments on NOP were due 4/28/14;    Read FOWS 4/28/2014 comments