4235 Monterey Road
Los Angeles, CA 90032



By providing an opportunity for a wilderness experience close to home, Debs Park serves a special and distinct community need in the northeastern region of the City of Los Angeles. The character of the park builds upon and reflects a natural setting among the heavily urbanized surrounding landscapes. The physical form of the Park can capitalize on its unique role as a place of refuge from the noise, congestion, and hurried pace of city life. Vision 1The City of Los Angeles has a unique opportunity to create park usage that acknowledges and integrates topography and natural resources. Park planning can promote the principles of sustainability, encompassing an emphasis on the preservation of the Park's natural areas while providing a mix of compatible uses.

Debs Park has two fundamental roles. One role of the park is to provide a place for nature education, appreciation, and habitat restoration. Debs Park will serve as true open space dedicated to the protection of native flora and fauna. In addition, this "urban wilderness" provides nurturing open space to all residents of the adjoining neighborhoods and region. The park is a place to ÒreconnectÓ oneself with the natural world. The other role of the park is a center for community activity with active recreational uses. In addition, the park can host cultural and artistic events that celebrate community life, and serve as a focal point within walking distance of surrounding residences.

With the idea of personal ownership comes proper stewardship from all park users. To that end, all members of the community will be invited to participate in an open dialog that can lead to the sense of partnership, which is central to the health and maintenance of public property.

Within the park, there will be distinct use areas, which are integrated by pathways connecting a wide range of visitor activities. There will be a continued evolution of the park to an Òurban wildernessÓ with well-defined open space, native habitat, and trail network. The park will also serve as a refuge where local residents come to enjoy peace and tranquillity, and return to the rhythms of nature. The park will be a safe place, where visitors do not fear the potential of violence.

Future site development will evolve based on the consideration of the unique environmental qualities of the park, rather than attempt to fit traditional recreational use patterns within its boundaries. All site and facility design will reflect the existing physical and environmental attributes and constraints that are in existence.

Vision 2

The timing and location of facilities improvement will be correlated with commitments to provide adequate transportation and utility infrastructure (sewer, water, energy, solid waste, and telecommunications) and public services (police, fire). The primary uses in the currently developed area (playing fields, picnic tables, barbecues, etc), will continue, however, there will be an opportunity for community groups to propose and operate public programs such as a community garden. New uses will be added only to the extent that they are compatible with existing uses and the vision and goals established in this plan.

In the urban wilderness, there will be few improvements/structures beyond the Los Angeles Nature Center. The Los Angeles Nature Center will be a gateway development that facilitates increasing the parkÕs appeal to the surrounding communities. There will be trails, signage, and interpretive displays. However, the focus will be managing the land for resource conservation. The primary emphasis will be on restoration and/or enhancement of the native plant communities and associated wildlife. Recreational uses in the natural areas will continue to be passive: hiking, walking, jogging, sitting, and observing nature.

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