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Coastal commission OKs camping in Malibu parks despite residents' fire fears

June 12, 2009 | 11:23 am

Over the strong objections of residents concerned about wildfires, the California Coastal Commission has voted 12-0 to approve a plan by the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy to extend trails and allow overnight camping in coastal parks in Malibu. The commission also voted unanimously Wednesday to deny a request by the city of Malibu to outlaw camping within its borders.

The conservancy's plan calls for creating 29 campsites and adding 3.5 miles of new canyon trails and trail connections in Ramirez Canyon, Escondido Canyon and Corral Canyon parks.

"This is a major victory for the people of California who purchased these parklands," Joseph T. Edmiston, executive director of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, said in a statement.

The conservancy's next step will be to submit a "public works plan" to the coastal agency. It will include measures to promote fire safety in the coastal canyons.

-- Martha Groves

Photo: Los Angeles Times