Santa Paula Branch Line Recreational Trail Compatibility Survey

This report is an inventory and analysis of existing trails in agricultural settings, with a focus on trails that are most comparable to the context of the Santa Paula Branch Line (SPBL) in Ventura County.

by Rails to Trails Conservancy, Alta Planning + Design

The objective was to find trails that have been successfully implemented and are currently operating in active agricultural areas similar to the proposed SPBL trail, and identify the challenges they faced and the factors that made them successful. Significant effort was made to contact the agricultural owner/operators adjacent to the trail in regard to their experience and perspective, as well as that of the trail owner/operator. While this study was conducted specifically for the SPBL, the findings are applicable to other areas where trails may traverse agricultural properties.

Over thirty trails were identified matching the first criteria. Of those, nine trails with the greatest similarity to the SPBL have been selected for detailed profiles. Information gathered for the remaining trails is also presented. In addition to the trail research and case studies, a review of technical literature and guidelines related to trails in agricultural settings was performed.

Attached document published April 2015

About the Authors


Rails to Trails Conservancy (RTC) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a nationwide network of trails from former rail lines and connecting corridors to build healthier places for healthier people. RTC’s mission, and its value, is magnified in urban areas, where one mile of trail can completely redefine the livability of a community. Where trails are more than just recreational amenities, creating opportunities for active transportation and physical activity—improving our health and wellbeing—as they safely connect us to jobs, schools, businesses, parks, and cultural institutions in our own neighborhoods and beyond.


Alta is more than a planning and design firm – our 200 expert planners, engineers, designers and encouragement specialists are on hand for each and every aspect of the work needed to help you create your active community.

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