Stewardship plan: Fostering community wellbeing, driving economic growth, instilling sustainability practices (Opinion)

Andy Chapman / Guest column

Lake Tahoe encounters significant challenges in accommodating the area’s locals, residents and travelers. These challenges encompass a range of issues, including the negative consequences of overcrowding, frustrating traffic gridlocks, and the profound impacts of climate change. When extending a warm welcome to visitors in our region along with nurturing the relationship with locals and residents, it is essential to thoroughly consider and address these pressing concerns.

That is why we came together to create a shared destination stewardship plan that will help address these overall local and traveler concerns across the entire region. Partners include California Tahoe Conservancy, City of South Lake Tahoe, El Dorado County, Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority, Nevada Division of Outdoor Recreation, North Tahoe Community Alliance, Placer County, Tahoe City Marina, Tahoe Prosperity Center, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, The Tahoe Fund, Travel North Tahoe Nevada, USDA Forest Service, Lake Tahoe Basin, Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority, Visit Tahoe-Truckee, Washoe County, and Washoe Development Corporation (Washoe Tribe).

This plan’s Shared Vision and Strategic Pillars were shaped to align with values that reflect deeply held beliefs of the organizations that formed the partnership that came together to develop this plan. As shown through extensive public engagement over the past year, these beliefs also are widely held by many in the Tahoe region. These values emerged from public workshops, in-depth interviews, discussion groups, and numerous facilitated conversations with the core planning team.

These shared values are articulated as four Guiding Principles:

  • Collaboration and collective action are critical to the success of this destination stewardship plan and for the Tahoe region to thrive into the future.
  • As the Tahoe region’s primary economic engine, tourism must be nurtured and shaped to support the wellbeing of its communities, visitors, businesses, natural environment, and cultures.
  • It is everyone’s responsibility to safeguard and improve Lake Tahoe and its surrounding lands and forests.
  • To protect the quality of the Tahoe experience, it is vital to manage use while providing opportunities for all to enjoy it.

This partnership also is well positioned to shed light on the impacts of Tahoe’s vital tourism and recreation economy by establishing and maintaining regional research. Fact-based insights, like surveys, can drive effective decision-making, identify local priorities, and increase public understanding of needed actions. As this partnership grows stronger, it can be an effective advocate for advancing vital shared initiatives in the Tahoe region, in California and Nevada statehouses, and beyond.

Andy Chapman is CEO for Travel North Tahoe Nevada.

Andy Chapman

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