Griffith Park, Los Angeles's largest and most-visited green space, has 53 miles of trails snaking through it, but a proposed new project would increase that number considerably, reports KPCC. The plan is to take about 180 acres of untouched, LADWP-owned land near Universal City (known as the Upper Hollywood Reservoir) and open it up to the public with hiking trails on about 11 miles, plus a parking lot. Opening paths on the land would increase connectivity to Cahuenga Peak, says Councilmember Tom LaBonge, in addition to giving Angelenos more land to hike. Cahuenga is that peak next to the Hollywood Sign that the city bought at great expense a few years ago.
The project's well on its way—the LA Department of Recreation and Parks gave the go-ahead to a license agreement that will allow it to lease the land from LADWP for 20 years. The LADWP's board does still have to approve the agreement, but an official says it's expected to get the green light, as it's similar to other proposals they've approved.
But all the enthusiasm does not mean this is an unequivocally good plan—the organization Friends of Griffith Park says that opening the land to the public may have some unintended effects on the area's wildlife, possibly driving out animals like deer and mountain lions, including the elusive Griffith Park mountain lion P-22. (Animals tend to shy away from areas where there's human activity.)