Environmental organization will move across town | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Environmental organization will move across town

Matthew Renda
mrenda@tahoedailytribune.com

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – The League to Save Lake Tahoe is investing in some new digs.

The environmental organization purchased a vacant commercial building at 2608 Lake Tahoe Blvd., which will serve as the League’s Environmental Center and staff offices.

“With this move, the League establishes a permanent home,” said Rochelle Nason, executive director of the League.

The new commercial space received the 2005 Best in the Basin Award for its environmentally friendly design, natural landscaping, and energy-efficient features.

The building provides the League with high visibility from the busy Highway 50 thoroughfare through South Lake Tahoe and should improve public outreach opportunities, according to Nason.

Dennis Oliver, TRPA spokesman, said the League’s purchase of land signifies the organization’s deep commitment to the Lake Tahoe Basin.

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“This is a positive move for the League,” said Oliver. “The fact that they’ve become a landowner demonstrates a long-term commitment. The TRPA will look forward to opportunities to partner with the League on positive initiatives.”

The League’s purchase means the environmental organization can leave a building that was situated on an ecologically sensitive stream environment zone.

In a previous Tribune report, Oliver called the scenario ironic given the League’s professed environmental goals.

“I think the League to Save Lake Tahoe will be in a better position as an environmental organization if they are able to move its operations out of a stream environment zone,” Oliver said in a February telephone interview. “There is a built-in irony there that I’m sure the League did not enjoy.”

While Nason acknowledged stream restoration was important for Lake Tahoe during a February telephone interview, she said she did not believe moving the League’s offices would necessarily result in restoration of that particular area, and disagreed the perceived irony was a primary motivation for the move.

“The league advocates restoration, but our move (from the currently occupied premises) will not mean this property is restored,” said Nason. “This building is legally existing and it was built prior to many of the area’s environmental restrictions. The League would like to see all streamzones around Lake Tahoe restored, but we also respect the property rights of legally existing buildings.”

Nason said reasons for the move include cost efficiency, office expansion, and an upgrade of community outreach programs.

When Nason joined the League 18 years ago, she worked in a small rented office at the corner of Highway 50 and Tahoe Keys Boulevard that housed just three staff members, she said.

“We had bumper stickers and pamphlets on our counter, and that’s it,” Nason said. “We have come a long way.”ꆱ

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