The Associated Students Coastal Fund, described in a recent press release as “a student-funded, student-run organization that serves to preserve, protect, and enhance the terrestrial and marine habitats associated with the UCSB shoreline,” has given Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration a generous grant of $50,000 in order to improve the fragile bluff area near Campus Point that is quickly being eroded by foot traffic. This donation could not come at a better time as the current pathway cannot support the heavy flow of pedestrian for much longer.
Construction is set to begin during the 2010-11 school year and will consist of a more heavy-duty, yet environmentally friendly, stairway leading to the beach. According to the Associated Students Coastal Fund, “The structure will be composed of cement footings, a metal-redwood frame, and recycled plastic steps. Cement footings will elevate the stairway and reduce human impact on the bluff, while allowing for natural sand movement.” The structure is also being created to blend into the vegetation of the surrounding area, as a way to preserve the natural beauty of the environment.
The Coastal Fund has financed three previous coastal access projects but the organization has allocated funds toward many other beach-based preservation attempts, 417 in total. Since the fall of 1999, the Coastal Fund has granted $1.68 million toward these projects and others.