VISTA — Vista Conservancy members had their hopes dampened when City Council rejected April 28 their $41,000 proposal to build a temporary trail linking Wildwood and Brengle Terrace parks. The planned trail, first proposed last month, would double the length of the existing Buena Vista Creek Trail by extending it through the former Sycamore Creek mobile home park.
While conservancy members speaking before the council stressed that their trail would be a temporary one, they made no secret of their ambitious plans for the property. These included a 170-piece art walk, a worm farm and a rainbow maker that would use diverted creek water. Conservancy member Mac MacFarlane said the trail might host farmers markets and offer fishing in the creek. He said he hoped to attract national attention, perhaps stimulating donations.
City Council was generally supportive of the project. Councilwoman Judy Ritter, who along with Councilman Robert Campbell had to recuse herself because her property abuts the proposed trail, spoke as a resident in favor of the project. Mayor Morris Vance threw cold water on the proposal, however.
“I think, as a city, we really want to see this happen, (but) I think it’s a little bit premature for us to commit to spending $41,000 tonight not knowing exactly where the money is coming from,” Vance said. He pointed out that with staff being cut and service fees being raised, this was not the time for a new expenditure.
Councilman Steve Gronke moved to deny the conservancy’s proposal, but only with the provision that the city make approval a “No. 1 priority” when the 2009-2010 budget is made in June. Councilman Frank Lopez approved Gronke’s motion causing it to pass 2-1 over the objections of Vance.