The city of Santa Clarita is set to honor the memory of Fereydoon Ghaffari, designer of Valencia’s first pedestrian walkways, at the Parks, Recreation and Community Services Commission’s meeting in Council Chambers at City Hall on Thursday, Dec. 6.
The ability to visit neighbors, ride your bike to a nearby park and travel throughout areas of our city – all without having to cross the street – is one of the many unique factors that makes Santa Clarita so special.
Since our city was incorporated nearly 31 years ago, our city officials have continually supported and dedicated resources to our community-wide trail system.
The city of Santa Clarita now boasts more than 90 miles of alternative transportation routes for residents. This multiuse public system provides interconnecting trails to neighborhoods throughout the city, connects to popular city amenities and provides access to our prized 10,000 plus acres of preserved open space and Metrolink Stations.
“The concept and design of a city-wide trail system dates back as early as 1978, prior to city incorporation, through collaboration between local community leaders in Santa Clarita and the County of Los Angeles,” said Mayor Laurene Weste. “The trail system was developed as part of the County’s General Plan Action Committee and adopted by the Los Angeles County in 1987.”
Mayor Weste chaired the Santa Clarita Valley Trails Advisory Committee that worked to map out the city’s future interconnected trail system in 1986. The committee was made up of other local leaders including Susan Ostrom, Linda Lambourne, Anne Irvine, Sherry StoLorick, Mark Subbotin and many others.
The committee physically walked every foot of the future trail system and worked diligently with the Los Angeles County, specifically Trail Coordinator James McCarthy, to tie the city’s future trail system to a larger, 400-mile, county-wide trail system.
These city trail plans were one of the first items brought before the inaugural City Council in 1988.
Twenty years prior to cityhood, Newhall Land and Farm hired Gruen Associates to design a concept of the Valencia community in the 1960s.
Fereydoon Ghaffari, an employee of Gruen Associates, led the team that designed the Valencia community and helped introduce the concept of independent pedestrian walkways linking the Valencia neighborhoods together.
“Mr. Ghaffari’s contributions were a small part in connecting Valencia communities in the 1960s to the future city of Santa Clarita’s multi-use trail system, which we have created for uses including walking, biking, skating, horseback riding, daily commuting and more,” Weste said. “Our city system goal ultimately will take us from urban neighborhoods out to non-urban open spaces.”
For more information on the city’s trail and paseo system, visit www.santa-clarita.com/Trails.