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May 10, 2012
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Martis Valley Trail project draft EIR released for public comment

TRUCKEE, Calif. — A report released late last month will guide decision makers on the Martis Valley Trail project. The Northstar Community Services District (NCSD), lead agency for the project announced the release of the public review draft of the Environmental Impact Report (EIR).

The proposed Class One, paved, 10-foot wide, multi-use trail would connect the planned trail system in Truckee to the Village at Northstar and eventually to the ridge defining the Lake Tahoe basin. The trail would mainly follow existing trails and dirt roads in the Martis Valley to the south of State Route 267. Two different trail alignments through the valley are being considered and are analyzed in the EIR on an equal weight basis. The “Highway Alignment” skirts the valley and is positioned closer to State Route 267 while the “Valley Alignment” would be located farther south, through the valley, along the path of an existing dirt road.

“It’s really exciting to be bringing this project one step closer to reality,” said Northstar Community Services District General Manager Mike Staudenmayer.

The existing Tompkins Memorial Trail and Martis Creek Lake trail systems weave through Martis Valley and are home to some of the most popular trails in the region. In 2007, the Truckee River Watershed Council reported significant erosion and sediment from trail runoff was affecting the streams and sensitive wetlands in that recreation area.

“If we can mitigate the current risks to our wetlands by building a more sustainable trail, I think the trail could be a positive thing,” said Lisa Wallace, executive director of the Truckee River Watershed Council. “We’d just want to make sure that everything is carefully considered throughout the building process and to ensure the trail is set up for responsible use.”

During the preparation phase for the EIR, supporters of the project determined the project could have adverse effects to biological, cultural, hydrological, transportation, visual and recreational resources. The report studies each of these resources and describes appropriate mitigation measures to reduce any impacts to a less than significant level.

Interested parties are encouraged to visit the project website at www.MartisValleyTrail.com to learn more about the trail project and to download a copy of the Draft EIR. A 45-day review period ending June 11 will allow for public comment on the Draft EIR. Comments will be accepted in written form during the review period and verbally at a public meeting scheduled May 16, 5:30 p.m. at the Town of Truckee Council Chambers. All written comments or questions regarding the Draft EIR should be addressed to:

Mike Staudenmayer, General Manager, Northstar CSD, 908 Northstar Drive, Northstar, CA 96161 or email mikes@northstarcsd.org.

— Submitted to aedgett@sierrasun.com

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Tahoe Daily Tribune Updated May 10, 2012 04:10PM Published May 10, 2012 04:05PM Copyright 2012 Tahoe Daily Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.