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Conservation Issues of the Ventana Chapter | monterey county

Monterey Bay Shores Eco-Resort Decision May Go to Appeals Court

August 2013
Sand City Dunes
Monterey spine-flower (Chorizanthe pungens var. pungens), a federally-listed threatened species found in coastal dune habitat in Monterey and Santa Cruz Counties. Photograph: Rod Yeager

In early July, Judge Harold Kahn of the Superior Court in San Francisco decided in favor of Security National Guaranty (SNG) in its litigation against the California Coastal Commission for denying their proposed mega resort a Coastal Development Permit (CDP) in 2010. The Monterey Bay Shores Eco-Resort has plans for 341-unit mixed use development on thirty nine acres of fragile coastal dunes west of Highway 1. The entire site is sensitive habitat area and supports threatened and endangered species such as the Smith's blue butterfly, Monterey spine-flower (shown here) and nesting western snowy plover. For over twelve years, Ventana Chapter has opposed this project and retained attorney Larry Silver to represent us as intervenors in all litigation related to this case.

The Court held that the Commission had misinterpreted the Sand City Local Coastal Plan (LCP) in a number of respects relating to the Commission's authority to protect the fragile sand dunes on site including a concern for coastal erosion caused by inadequate setback and the negative impacts from development grading. In essence, the Court rewrote ambiguous provisions of the LCP and made its own interpretations.

The Commission is now considering an appeal of Judge Kahn's decision by the end of the year. While the appeal is pending, which can take up to a year at least, SNG cannot proceed to ask the Commission to once again review the project and grant it a CDP. Even if it wins the appeal, SNG will still have to go back to the Commission to apply for a CDP.

The Club will continue to support the Commission in this case. We believe that if constructed this so called "eco-resort" would be one of the largest resorts ever built in the California coastal zone, and would be located directly on top of some of the rarest, most environmental sensitive sand dunes left in the world.

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section title

Ventana Chapter Retains Third Expert to Submit Comments to the CCC Challenging the Habitat Protection Plan for Monterey Bay Shores Resort
February 2017

Sierra Club Files a Notice of Intent to Sue for Violations of the Endangered Species Act from Construction and Operation of the Monterey Bay Shores Development
August 2016

Ventana Chapter Submits Comments to the California Coastal Commission Challenging the Revised HPP for Monterey Bay Shores Resort
March 2016

Ventana Chapter Submits 2 Sets of Expert Comments on Biological Resources and Snowy Plover Habitat for Monterey Bay Shores Resort Dunes Restoration Plan
August 2015

Monterey Bay Shores Resort Hearing at the California Coastal Commission
May 2015

Financial Settlement Reached in Lawsuit between Monterey Bay Shores Resort and Lender
February 2015

California Coastal Commission Votes to Schedule Collections Resort Appeal Hearing in 2015
December 2014

New Financial and Compliance Woes for Monterey Bay Shores Resort
November 2014

Plans for Monterey Bay Resort Deemed Deficient
September 2014

Public Outcry Over Threats to Snowy Plover Nests at Sand City Project Site
May 2014

Coastal Commission Approval of Sand City Resort and Condominium Project Undermines Rare Species Recovery Plan
April 2014

Sierra Club Submits Letter Opposing Monterey Bay Shores Resort to California Coastal Commission
April 2014

Chapter Appeals Sand City Approval of The Collection Resort to the California Coastal Commission
January 2014

Chapter Urges Sand City City Council to Deny The Collection at Monterey Bay Resort Project
November 2013

Monterey Bay Shores Eco-Resort Decision may go to Appeals Court
August 2013

Chapter Submits Comments on The Collection at Monterey Bay Proposed Mega Hotel Complex in Sand City
February 2013

Coastal Commission Denies Dunes Project
February 2010

Sierra Club opposes Coastal Dunes Resort
April 2009