MRCA Names Fran Pavley Meadow

New 71-acre Fran Pavley Meadow acquisition will double the amount of permanently protected core habitat along the 101 freeway leading to the proposed wildlife passage over the eight-lane freeway.

In mid-November 2016, the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority (MRCA) and the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy (SMMC) obtained both sufficient funding and an agreement to purchase the 71-acre Chesebro Meadow property in the Liberty Canyon Wildlife Corridor that will provide key connectivity to the proposed wildlife crossing over the 101 Freeway in Agoura Hills.

“We are naming this new open space Fran Pavley Meadow for our beloved State Senator,” said Joseph T. Edmiston, Executive Director of the SMMC. “Fran has been on the front lines of every land use battle to protect the wildlife corridor between the Simi Hills and the Santa Monica Mountains during her 14 years in the Legislature, her years as City Councilmember, as Mayor of Agoura Hills, and before that, as a citizen activist who recognized the importance of preserving open space for future generations.”

Recognizing the regional importance to build the wildlife crossing, Pavley convened a summit last year to focus government and scientific resources on developing a state-of-the-art structure to provide safe passage across the freeway and Agoura Road. The 71 acres support a mix of chaparral, coastal sage scrub, grassland, oak woodland-savannah vegetation, and include a section of Chesebro Creek in the upper Malibu Canyon watershed.

A housing development, a private high school and, as recently as last year, fifteen approved equestrian estates were formerly proposed for the site. Now, with the public protection of this habitat adjacent to the freeway, construction of the proposed dedicated wildlife passage over the 101 freeway becomes inevitable.

“The wildlife overcrossing will be Sen. Pavley’s legacy,” said Edmiston.

For more information: (323) 221-9944;


Flavia Potenza

Flavia Potenza is executive editor of the Messenger Mountain News. She is also a founding member of the 40-year old Topanga Messenger that closed its doors in 2016. She can be reached at

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