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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA / A news summary | The Regional
Review / DEVELOPMENTS IN ORANGE, RIVERSIDE, SAN BERNARDINO
AND VENTURA COUNTIES

State OKs Final Funds for Coal Canyon Preservation

August 12, 2000

The preservation of the Coal Canyon wilderness, sought for years by environmentalists, appears a certainty after $4.67 million in state funds was set aside Friday to complete the purchase.

Scientists say the 649-acre parcel is a vital link to ensure that wildlife can continue to roam between Chino Hills State Park and the Cleveland National Forest.

"This is arguably the most critical biological corridor in California," said state Parks Director Rusty Areias.

He called Coal Canyon's preservation especially important because of rapid home development in the area. The land on the border between Orange and Riverside counties sits amid one of the fastest-growing areas of California.

The last piece of funding was approved Friday by the state Public Works Board. Those fighting to preserve Coal Canyon raised $40 million to purchase the land from St. Clair Co., a private developer. The developer, which reduced the asking price by $10 million, originally planned to build more than 1,000 homes on the land.

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