A parks master plan for the 2,000-acre Prado Regional Park in Chino has been launched with a $300,000 agreement between San Bernardino County and a consulting firm in San Diego.
Supervisor Curt Hagman, whose fourth district includes Chino, Chino Hills, Montclair, Ontario, and southern Upland, has been promoting a wide range of ideas for Prado Park as he travels through the cities in his district.
“It’s going to be a tough but fun process,” Mr. Hagman said. “I want people to start thinking about the things they would like to see, whether it’s active or passive use.”
Mr. Hagman said there are approximately 1,500 unused acres of the park on the east side of the lake, southeast of the California Institution for Women.
“The land is all part of Prado Park, but it is untouched,” he said. “I think it’s underutilized.”
The boundaries generally include the area east of the 71 Freeway and Euclid Avenue and south of Pine Avenue to the Riverside County line, all within the city of Chino.
With the addition of county-purchased properties, the 2,000 acres will likely become more than 3,000, he said.
The parkland, owned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, features fishing, camping, hiking, biking, and nature trails. Just outside the park is El Prado Golf Course with two 18-hole golf courses, horseback riding, archery, and a shooting range that was used in the 1984 Summer Olympic Games.
Mr. Hagman said funding is lined up for Pine Avenue street improvements with a three-lane offramp on the east side of the 71.
Some of the ideas Mr. Hagman has been bringing up are a Coachella-style music event, an equestrian center, a community farm, soccer fields, NFL practice fields, and a farmer’s market where produce is grown and sold.
“Let’s have everything at the table and talk about the pros and cons,” he said.
The process will consist of community meetings, surveys, and gathering input. He is in the beginning stages of establishing a committee.
Chino Hills resident Paulette Hawkins, who lives in the Butterfield area, said she heard from neighbors about the plan and was stunned to hear about a possible Coachella-style event.
The Coachella Music and Arts festival, featuring top musicians and artists, is a two-day outdoor venue held on two consecutive weekends that attracts hundreds of thousands of people to Indio each year. More than 250,000 people attended the 2017 event.
“A Coachella event would completely destroy the quality of life on the south side of Chino Hills,” Mrs. Hawkins said. “Thousands of people would be coming in. You can imagine the traffic and 24-hour music.”
Mrs. Hawkins said the community doesn’t need more buildings.
“We need to start leaving things alone,” she said. “Open space should be included in their master plan.”
Mr. Hagman said the environmental impacts of all options will be studied. “This is not my vision, but the community’s vision,” he said.
The design firm KTU&A was awarded the contract at a board of supervisors meeting in May. The staff report states that the plan is intended to increase visitor usage and revenue through modernized grounds, facilities, and concession opportunities.