As California expands efforts to prevent devastating wildfires, CAL FIRE announced on April 16 over $43 million in grants awarded to 66 local fire prevention projects across the state. In Marin county, FIRESafe MARIN was selected to receive $993,500 to help fund a $1.3 million project aimed at improving the safety of evacuation routes in seven central Marin communities. This is one-time funding, with no funds available for maintenance. This grant will allow FIRESafe MARIN to make a "first-pass" at roadside maintenance in seven neighborhoods with critical wildfire evacuation hazards. Please support Measure C on the March 3 ballot if you want to see this type of work in ALL at-risk neighborhoods, and the long term maintenance that's required.
The grant provides funding to seven hillside neighborhoods along the eastern slopes of Mt. Tamalpais. In order to improve evacuation routes there, vegetation will be reduced along more than 55 miles of roads, improving access and egress, and strategically dispersing fuel reduction over a 3,000-acre geographic area with a long history of wildfires. The project locations were selected based on priorities identified in the 2016 Marin Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP - www.firesafemarin.org/cwpp).
The project is a cooperative effort between FIRESafe MARIN and more than a dozen partners, including the Towns of Corte Madera, Ross, San Anselmo, and Fairfax, the City of Larkspur, County of Marin, along with Central Marin Fire Department, Kentfield Fire Protection District, Ross Valley Fire Department, Marin County Fire Department, and Marin County Parks. Work in Corte Madera and Kentfield was completed in 2019.
Neighborhoods where work will occur include: Christmas Tree Hill in Corte Madera, Madrone Canyon in Larkspur, Kent Woodlands in Kentfield, Bald Hill in Ross and San Anselmo, Deer Park, Cascade Canyon, and Manor Hill in Fairfax, as well as fire roads on Marin County Parks lands extending more than six miles from Mill Valley to Fairfax. FIRESafe MARIN anticipates work to begin in late 2019, with completion by late spring 2021.