A fish Tale. A friend of my son’s sent me this picture about seven years ago. The fish was caught in South Lake, which is just west of Twin Oaks Valley Road below Double Peak Park. I asked him to send it to me because I wanted to forward it to the City Manager. My plea to the City Manager? Let’s get South Lake open and let kids fish! I, um, “redacted” the face in the picture because fishing in South Lake is currently illegal and violators could face up to a $1,000 fine.
The city has big plans for a park at South Lake, but those plans are expensive and while the city waits for funding, the lake sits closed. Since the day I got this picture, I’ve been working get South Lake open – to keep the full park in the plan, but to pursue scaled-back, less expensive improvements that allow the city to open the lake to the public. The good news is we’re almost there!
At our June 26 meeting, the Council approved the Parks Master Plan, which included plans to open up South Lake for recreational use by early 2019. These plans include improving trails around the lake, constructing a usable dock, and, most important, opening the lake for public use. All of these improvements will make the lake accessible in the period of time before the larger park is completed, which is something I have pursued for years on the Council.
The other good news is the updated plan moves the parking lot for the park, eliminating the need for a planned traffic light heading North down the hill on Twin Oaks Valley Road. Removing this light from the plans reduces the number of traffic lights between the top of San Elijo Road and the 78, which has been a concern for the community since the approval of Brookfield's Rancho Teroso project. One less traffic light will make it a slightly shorter trip back and forth over the hill.
All of this progress represents a culmination of years of work from myself, the Council, city staff, and the city as a whole. Soon, South Lake will be accessible for everyone in our community, bringing life to a new, growing area of San Marcos. Most important, it will let kids fish in South Lake.