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VENTURA COUNTY ROUNDUP | EAST COUNTY / SIMI VALLEY

Residents Keep Lobbying for Park

November 03, 1998|TONY LYSTRA

As it stands, Sycamore Canyon Park isn't much more than a pile of dirt. But area residents want to change that.

Promised a park five years ago, residents of Sycamore Canyon Village near Wood Ranch Elementary School want the park developed so families in the neighborhood can enjoy more open space.

Officials with the Sycamore Canyon Village Homeowners Assn. said some community members were told five years ago that the park would be completed within 18 months.

That hasn't happened, and area residents are continually lobbying the Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District to get their small park built.

"We're not without our political challenges, because there are others in the community who are owed community parks," said Denise Guerrero, president of the homeowners association. "We have to stay in the view of [parks district] trustees so when they . . . vote on budgets and put things on the planning schedule, we remain a priority."

Jerry Gladden, general manager of the Simi district, said plans for the park have been tabled until recently because of the state's use of parks funds for education spending and a deal the district struck with Wood Ranch's original developer.

"There are five different parks projects in that corner of the valley, and people would like to see them all done," Gladden said. "We only have so much staff to move these things forward and we can't do it all at once."

District officials estimate that the $800,000 park--which would contain grassy areas, landscaping, a parking lot, picnic shelter and small playground--will be completed by June 2000.

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