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Protect Joshua Tree Woodland from Development.

There is a building proposal in the Morongo Basin to build a glamping resort hosting 75 camping sites, they plan to include a bar and restaurant in Joshua Tree Woodland. For many who have been following our work to protect the Western Joshua Tree, Yucca brevifolia you know that there is a one year moratorium on takes (remove/relocate/kill) of the Western Joshua Tree and that is was granted temporary protection as a threatened species under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA). This may prove to be a hurdle for the project proponents but we need your voices to help us stop this from happening.

Public comments will take place April 26, 2021 and with permission I am sharing an email from Chris Clarke about the upcoming ZOOM meeting scheduled for April 15, 2021 at 6:30 where folks can ask questions and learn how to prepare a public comment. Please read email below with the zoom link that is at the bottom of the email.

"Neighbors and friends;

Some of you may have heard of the proposal to build a large luxury camping resort along Route 247 on a 640-acre parcel that includes a large area of the Pipes Canyon wash. (See attached flier.) I’ve been approached by a number of concerned residents and frequent visitors who wonder whether there’s anything we can do to either stop this project or — at the very least — ensure that San Bernardino County conducts a full examination of the project’s likely environmental and social impacts before proceeding further.

Given the intense public interest and relatively short timeframe for public comment (April 26 being the soft deadline), NPCA will be holding a community meeting on Zoom this Thursday, April 15, at 6:30 PM. The purpose of this meeting will be to cover how to make effective comments to the county on various topics, as well as planning to organize a broader community response to the project if appropriate.

Development in the Morongo Basin to address ever-growing visitation is almost certainly inevitable. Offering new places for visitors to camp is an important long-term goal, and can reduce development pressure inside and outside the park. It’s fair to question, however, whether deliberately catering to the most affluent visitors, as is the case with the burgeoning “glamping” trend, is either wise or fair to residents and less-affluent visitors.

Personally, I also have strong concerns about this location in particular, and have heard similar concerns from others. Included in the reasons why this site might not be the best place to build a large camping resort:

· The site is a priority connectivity corridor between Sand to Snow NM, the Bighorn Wilderness, Joshua Tree National Park, and points north.

· The configuration of Route 247 near the site means adding large amounts of traffic entering the roadway could be extremely dangerous

· 75 campsites potentially means frequent nights with 75 simultaneous campfires, raising serious concerns about both air quality and fire safety, with a large population of State Threatened species candidate western Joshua Trees just downwind

· Potential for pollution of groundwater in Pipes Canyon Wash from septic systems, visitor vehicle oil and coolant leaks, or campers carelessly discarding dishwater and similar items into the soil or wash

· Effect on the immediate vicinity from increased unplanned tourism development

I expect I’ve left some important issues out. Feel free to raise them at the meeting, or send me an email. I hope to see you on Thursday. Zoom info pasted below.

Chris Clarke

Ruth Hammett Associate Director, California Desert Program

National Parks Conservation Association"

Meeting URL:


US: +16699006833,,96498724688#,,,,*257559#

or +12532158782,,96498724688#,,,,*257559#

Meeting ID: 964 9872 4688