Thursday, May 21, 2009

What's a Hahamongna?

Do you know where this photo was taken? Somewhere in Europe? New England? A National Forest?

The answer is none of the above. This bucolic nature park is less than 30 minutes from downtown Los Angeles and is home to one of the largest old age oak groves still intact in Southern California.

This parkland also graces the banks of the Arroyo Seco River. Where is it?

It's the Hahamongna Watershed Park in Pasadena, California.

Thanks to the hard work of lots of civic leaders, environmentalists, and community activists, the City of Pasadena created an Arroyo Seco Master Plan (, which includes the four components of the Hahamonga Watershed Park Master Plan, the Central Arroyo Master Plan, the Lower Arroyo Master Plan, and the Design Guidelines for the Arroyo Seco.
In 2005, the City of Pasadena acquired a 30-acre adjacent parcel, known as the Hahamongna Annex, whose future uses are limited to open space and recreational use. Currently, the City is working on a plan to amend the Hahamongna Master Plan to integrate the Annex:
Whether you personally enjoy the Hahamongna or just want to learn more about how an environmental master plan is created and modified through public comment and advocacy, the Hahamongna annex is a fascinating study of the push-pull dynamics at work when a municipality is seeking to 'rehabilitate' a parcel within a long-used natural riparian parkland.

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